2477012

Revelation, 22–23 September 1832 [D&C 84]

faithful in all things shall not be weary in mind neither darkened neither body , limb, or Joint and an hair of your heads shall not fall to the ground unnoticed38

See Matthew 10:29–30.  


and they shall not go hungry, neither athirst, therefore take no thought for the morrow for what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink or wherewith all ye shall be clothed for consider the lillies of the field how they grow they toil not neither do they spin and the kingdoms of the world in all ther glory are not arayed like one of them for your father who art in heaven knoweth that you have need of all these thing therefore let the morrow take thought for the things of itself,39

See Matthew 6:25–34.  


neither take ye thought before hand what ye shall say but treasure up in your minds continually the words of life and it shall be given you in the very hour that portion that shall be meeted unto evry man40

See Luke 12:11–12.  


therefore let no man among you (for this 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
is unto all the faithful who are called of God in the 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
unto the ministry) therefore let no man from this hour take purse or scrip that goeth forth to proclaim this gospel of the kingdom41

This commandment to go without “purse or scrip” was also given in a July 1830 revelation directed to JS and Oliver Cowdery. Whether that instruction applied only to JS and Cowdery or had a more universal application is unclear. Those sent to preach generally relied on the beneficence of either church members or those to whom they preached for food and lodging, but some carried at least some money with them. When William E. McLellin departed to preach with Parley P. Pratt in January 1833, however, he specifically noted that he and Pratt took “no money neither two coats” with them because they were “determined to keep all the commandments of God.” (Revelation, July 1830–A [D&C 24:18]; Samuel Smith, Diary, 20 Sept. 1832; Cahoon, Diary, May–Aug. 1831; Murdock, Journal, Aug.–Sept. 1831; McLellin, Journal, 28 Jan. 1833.)  


behold I send you out to reproove the world of all there unrighteous deeds and to teach them of a Judgment which is to come and whoso receiveth you there I will be also for I will go before your face I will be on your right hand and on your lift left and my spirit shall be in your hearts and mine Angels round about you to bear you up, whoso receiveth you receiveth me and the same will feed you and clothe you, and give you money and he who feedeth you or chothe you or giveth you money shall in no wise loose his reward43

See Matthew 10:40–42.  


and he that doeth not these things is not my deciple, by this you may know my deciples he that receiveth you not, go away from him, alone by yourselves and cleanse your feet even with water, pur water, whether in heat or in cold44

The instructions to “cleanse your feet” in response to rejection of their message were probably related to Christ’s instructions in the New Testament to “shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them.” These instructions were included in previous revelations. (Mark 6:11; Luke 10:10–11; Revelation, 29 Aug. 1832 [D&C 99:4]; Revelation, 25 Jan. 1832–A [D&C 75:20].)  


and bare testamony of it unto your father which is in heaven and return not again unto that man, and in whatsoevr village or city ye enter do likewise, nevertheless search dilligently and spare not, wo unto that house, or that village or city that rejecteth you or your words or testamony concerning me, wo I say again unto that house or that village or city that rejecteth you or your words or your testamony of me for I the Almighty have laid my hand upon the nations to scorge them for ther wickedness and plagues shall go forth and it shall not be taken from the earth untill I have completed my work which shall be cut short in righteousness45

A November 1831 revelation declared, “The Lord is nigh & the anger of the Lord is kindled & his sword is bathed in heaven & it shall fall upon the inhabitants of the Earth & the arm of the Lord shall be revealled & the day cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord neither his servants neith[er] give heed to the words of the Prophets & Apostles shall be cut off from among the People.” Similarly, a September 1830 revelation discussed plagues that the Lord would send in the last days, including flies, maggots, and hailstorms. (Revelation, 1 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 1:12–14]; Revelation, Sept. 1830–A [D&C 29:18].)  


until all shall know me who remain even from the least to the greatest47

See Jeremiah 31:34; and Hebrews 8:11.  


and shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord and shall see eye to eye,48

See Isaiah 52:8.  


and shall lift up the voice,49

See Isaiah 24:14.  


and with the voice together sing this new song,50

The concept of singing a new song appears in Psalms 40:3, 144:9; Revelation 5:9, 14:3; and other places in the Bible. At the conclusion of an article on the Book of Mormon in the January 1833 issue of The Evening and the Morning Star, William W. Phelps wrote, “And when the Lord has come in his glory, you shall lift up your voices and sing this new song of the Lord.” He then printed the text of remainder of this paragraph. (“The Book of Mormon,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Jan. 1833, [3].)  


saying the lord hath brought again 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
51

See Isaiah 52:8.  


the Lord hath redeemed his people Israel, according to the election of grace52

See Romans 11:5.  


which was brought to pass by the faith and covenant of ther fathers, the Lord hath redeemed his people and Satan

A fallen angel, or son of God, known by many names, including Lucifer, the devil, the father of lies, the prince of darkness, perdition, and the adversary. In the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and JS’s Bible revisions, Satan was described as a tempter of men...

View Glossary
is bound53

See Revelation 20:2.  


and time is no longer54

See Revelation 10:6.  


the Lord hath gathered all things in one the Lord hath brought down Zion from above the Lord hath brought up Zion from benieth55

According to JS’s revision of the book of Genesis, the city of Enoch, which the Lord took into heaven, would descend from heaven in the last days and unite with the New Jerusalem. (“Extract from the Prophecy of Enoch,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Aug. 1832, [2]–[3].)  


the earth hath travailed and brought forth her [p. [4]]
faithful in all things shall not be weary in mind neither darkened neither body  limb, limb, or Joint and an hair of your heads shall not fall to the ground unnoti[c]ed38

See Matthew 10:29–30.  


 and they shall not go hungry, neither athirst, therefore take no thought for the morrow for  what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink or wherewith all ye shall ye shall be cloth ed for consider the lillies of the field how they grow they toil not neither do they spin  and the kingdoms of the world in all ther glory are not arayed like one of them  for your father who art in heaven knoweth that you have need of all these thing  therefore let the morrow take thought for the things of itself,39

See Matthew 6:25–34.  


neither take ye  thought before hand what ye shall say but treasure up in your minds con tinually the words of life and it shall be given you in the very hour that  po[r]tion that shall be meeted unto evry man40

See Luke 12:11–12.  


therefore let no man among  you (for this 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
is unto all the faithful who are called of God  in the 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
unto the ministry) therefore let no man from this hour  take purse or scrip that goeth forth to proclaim this gospel of the kingdom41

This commandment to go without “purse or scrip” was also given in a July 1830 revelation directed to JS and Oliver Cowdery. Whether that instruction applied only to JS and Cowdery or had a more universal application is unclear. Those sent to preach generally relied on the beneficence of either church members or those to whom they preached for food and lodging, but some carried at least some money with them. When William E. McLellin departed to preach with Parley P. Pratt in January 1833, however, he specifically noted that he and Pratt took “no money neither two coats” with them because they were “determined to keep all the commandments of God.” (Revelation, July 1830–A [D&C 24:18]; Samuel Smith, Diary, 20 Sept. 1832; Cahoon, Diary, May–Aug. 1831; Murdock, Journal, Aug.–Sept. 1831; McLellin, Journal, 28 Jan. 1833.)  


behold  I send you out to reproove the world of all there unrighteous deeds and to t[ea]ch42

TEXT: “t[hole in paper]ch”. Copies of this revelation in both Revelation Book 1 and Revelation Book 2 have “teach” here. (Revelation Book 1, p. 154; Revelation Book 2, p. 28.)  


 them of a Judgment which is to come and whoso receiveth you there I will be also  for I will go before your face I will be on your right hand and on your  lift [left] and my spirit shall be in your hearts and mine Angels round about  you to bear you up, whoso receiveth you receiveth me and the same will feed  you and clothe you, and give you money and he who feedeth you or chothe  you or giveth you money shall in no wise loose his reward43

See Matthew 10:40–42.  


and he that  doeth not these things is not my deciple, by this you may know my  deciples he that receiveth you not, go away from him, alone by your selves and cleanse your feet even with water, pur water, whether in  heat or in cold44

The instructions to “cleanse your feet” in response to rejection of their message were probably related to Christ’s instructions in the New Testament to “shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them.” These instructions were included in previous revelations. (Mark 6:11; Luke 10:10–11; Revelation, 29 Aug. 1832 [D&C 99:4]; Revelation, 25 Jan. 1832–A [D&C 75:20].)  


and bare testamony of it unto your father which is  in heaven and return not again unto that man, and in whatsoevr  village or city ye enter do likewise, nevertheless search dilligently and  spare not, wo unto that house, or that village or city that rejecteth  you or your words or testamony concerning me, wo I say again unto  that house or that village or city that rejecteth you or your words or  your testamony of me for I the Almighty have laid my hand upon  the nations to scorge them for ther wickedness and plagues shall go  forth and it shall not be taken from the earth untill I have com pleted my work which shall be cut short in righteousness45

A November 1831 revelation declared, “The Lord is nigh & the anger of the Lord is kindled & his sword is bathed in heaven & it shall fall upon the inhabitants of the Earth & the arm of the Lord shall be revealled & the day cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord neither his servants neith[er] give heed to the words of the Prophets & Apostles shall be cut off from among the People.” Similarly, a September 1830 revelation discussed plagues that the Lord would send in the last days, including flies, maggots, and hailstorms. (Revelation, 1 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 1:12–14]; Revelation, Sept. 1830–A [D&C 29:18].)  


until  all shall know me who remain even from the least to46

TEXT: Later redaction in unidentified handwriting changes “to” to “unto”: “<un>to”.  


the greatest47

See Jeremiah 31:34; and Hebrews 8:11.  


 and shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord and shall see eye  to eye,48

See Isaiah 52:8.  


and shall lift up the voice,49

See Isaiah 24:14.  


and with the voice together  sing this new song,50

The concept of singing a new song appears in Psalms 40:3, 144:9; Revelation 5:9, 14:3; and other places in the Bible. At the conclusion of an article on the Book of Mormon in the January 1833 issue of The Evening and the Morning Star, William W. Phelps wrote, “And when the Lord has come in his glory, you shall lift up your voices and sing this new song of the Lord.” He then printed the text of remainder of this paragraph. (“The Book of Mormon,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Jan. 1833, [3].)  


saying the lord hath brought again 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
51

See Isaiah 52:8.  


 the Lord hath redeemed his people Israel, according to the election  of grace52

See Romans 11:5.  


which was brought to pass by the faith and covenant  of ther fathers, the Lord hath redeemed his people and Satan

A fallen angel, or son of God, known by many names, including Lucifer, the devil, the father of lies, the prince of darkness, perdition, and the adversary. In the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and JS’s Bible revisions, Satan was described as a tempter of men...

View Glossary
is  bound53

See Revelation 20:2.  


and time is no longer54

See Revelation 10:6.  


the Lord hath gathered all things in one  the Lord hath brought down Zion from above the Lord hath brought  up Zion from benieth55

According to JS’s revision of the book of Genesis, the city of Enoch, which the Lord took into heaven, would descend from heaven in the last days and unite with the New Jerusalem. (“Extract from the Prophecy of Enoch,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Aug. 1832, [2]–[3].)  


the earth hath travailed and brought forth her [p. [4]]
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After JS relocated from Hiram

Area settled by immigrants from Pennsylvania and New England, ca. 1802. Located in northeastern Ohio about twenty-five miles southeast of Kirtland. Population in 1830 about 500. Population in 1840 about 1,100. JS lived in township at home of John and Alice...

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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, on 12 September 1832, 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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who had returned from preaching in the eastern United States

North American constitutional republic. Constitution ratified, 17 Sept. 1787. Population in 1805 about 6,000,000; in 1830 about 13,000,000; and in 1844 about 20,000,000. Louisiana Purchase, 1803, doubled size of U.S. Consisted of seventeen states at time ...

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came to JS to report on their proselytizing. While JS and these elders were “together in these seasons of joy,” a later history recounts, JS “inquired of the Lord and received” a revelation dated 22 and 23 September 1832.1

JS History, vol. A-1, 229.  


The beginning of the revelation identified its audience as JS and six elders, but partway through the revelation, the audience shifted to “Eleven high Priests

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

View Glossary
save one.” Because JS was living in Newel K. Whitney

3/5 Feb. 1795–23 Sept. 1850. Trader, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Samuel Whitney and Susanna Kimball. Moved to Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York, 1803. Merchant at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York, 1814. Mercantile clerk for...

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’s white store

In Apr. 1826, Whitney purchased quarter-acre lot on northeast corner of Chardon and Chillicothe roads and built two-story, 1500-square-foot, white store. Mercantile store also functioned as Kirtland Mills post office. Whitney met JS at store, 4 Feb. 1831....

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, the revelation was probably dictated in either the store’s upstairs “translating room” or the upstairs “council room,” places where JS frequently worked.
The revelation was dictated over the course of two days, most likely beginning the evening of 22 September and continuing into the early morning hours of 23 September.2

A life sketch of Evan Greene (who was presumably present) gives the revelation’s date as “the night of the 22nd and 23rd of September, 1832.” (Richards, “Brief Life Sketch of Evan Melbourne Greene,” 2.)  


Textual evidence indicates a pause in the dictation at some point on 23 September. The three existing manuscript copies of the revelation (one in the handwriting of Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

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, another by Williams and JS, and one 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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) all contain a clear break between the phrase “for he is full of mercy Justice grace and truth and peace for ever and ever Amen” and the phrase “And again verily verily I say unto you it is expedient . . . ,” marking an interruption in the dictation.3

The Williams copy is featured herein. For the Williams and JS copy and the Whitmer copy, see Revelation Book 2, pp. 20–31; and Revelation Book 1, pp. 149–156.  


Whitmer’s copy even adds “Received on the 23 day of September 1832” between those two lines. However, the three manuscripts also include “viz 23d. day of September AD 1832” as a notation several pages before this break, indicating that material presented before the interruption was also dictated on 23 September. It may be that the dictation went into the early morning hours of 23 September, halted for a period of time, and then recommenced later that day.
The index of Revelation Book 2, one of the volumes in which this revelation was recorded, designated the revelation as one “explaining the two priest hoods

Power or authority of God. The priesthood was conferred through the laying on of hands upon adult male members of the church in good standing; no specialized training was required. Priesthood officers held responsibility for administering the sacrament of...

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and commissioning the Apostles

A title indicating one sent forth to preach; later designated as a specific ecclesiastical and priesthood office. By 1830, JS and Oliver Cowdery were designated as apostles. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church explained that an “apostle is an elder...

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to preach the gospel.”4

Revelation Book 2, Index, [1].  


An understanding of priesthood was still developing among followers of JS, especially in terms of its connection to different offices in the church. The Book of Mormon indicated that authority from God was necessary to perform certain ordinances, such as baptism

An ordinance in which an individual is immersed in water for the remission of sins. The Book of Mormon explained that those with necessary authority were to baptize individuals who had repented of their sins. Baptized individuals also received the gift of...

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and conferring the gift of the Holy Ghost

A right or privilege bestowed through the confirmation ordinance. Individuals were confirmed members of the church and received the gift of the Holy Ghost through the laying on of hands. The Book of Mormon explained that remission of sins requires not only...

View Glossary
, which led JS 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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to petition God for such authority as they worked together in translating

To produce a text from one written in another language; in JS’s usage, most often through divine means. JS considered the ability to translate to be a gift of the spirit, like the gift of interpreting tongues. He recounted that he translated “reformed Egyptian...

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that record.5

See, for example, Book of Mormon, 1830 ed., 477–478, 493 [3 Nephi 11:21–22; 18:36–37].  


Later accounts indicate that in May 1829 and sometime thereafter, they received angelic visitations that provided them first with the authority to baptize and later with the authority to officiate in other 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...

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.6

Oliver Cowdery, Norton, OH, to William W. Phelps, 7 Sept. 1834, LDS Messenger and Advocate, Oct. 1834, 1:15–16; JS History, vol. A-1, 17–18.  


However, extant records up to June 1831 did not call such authority “priesthood”; that term—while appearing in both the Book of Mormon and in JS’s Bible revision—did not appear in any other contemporary documents until the minutes of a June 1831 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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, which noted that several individuals “were ordained to the high Priesthood

The authority and power held by certain officers in the church. The Book of Mormon referred to the high priesthood as God’s “holy order, which was after the order of his Son,” and indicated that Melchizedek, a biblical figure, was a high priest “after this...

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.”7

Minute Book 2, 3 June 1831. For more information on the meaning of “high Priesthood” in 1831, see Historical Introduction to Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831.  


Moreover, the “Articles and Covenants” of the church explained the different duties of apostles, elders, priests

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. In the Book of Mormon, priests were described as those who baptized, administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto the church,” and taught “the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” A June 1829 revelation directed...

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, teachers

Generally, one who instructs, but also an ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The Book of Mormon explained that teachers were to be ordained “to preach repentance and remission of sins through Jesus Christ, by the endurance of faith on his name to the end...

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, and deacons

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The “Articles and Covenants” directed deacons to assist teachers in their duties. Deacons were also to “warn, expound, exhort, and teach and invite all to come unto Christ.” Although deacons did not have the authority...

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but did not explicitly associate these offices with the priesthood.8
By late 1831, the high priesthood was understood to refer to both the office of high priest and to a broader authority. The office, according to an 11 November 1831 revelation, was superior to other offices in the church, just as the authority seemed to be the highest authority. This revelation stated that after the offices of deacon, teacher, priest, and elder came “the high Priest hood which is the greatest of all.”9 A history JS began writing around summer 1832 suggests that he had received two separate powers with different responsibilities. In that history, JS noted that “the ministring of—Aangels

Being who acts as a minister and messenger between heaven and earth. JS taught that angels were individuals who “belonged to this earth”; those who had already lived on earth were often resurrected beings. In addition to giving instruction, direction, and...

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” gave him an authority that allowed him “to adminster the letter of the Gospel.” He also recorded receiving “the high Priesthood after the holy order of the son of the living God,” which gave him “power and ordinence from on high to preach the Gospel in the administration and demonstration of the spirit.”10
This 22–23 September revelation similarly delineated the existence of two priesthoods: a greater priesthood that contains 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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to the mysteries of the kingdom and to the knowledge of God, and a lesser priesthood

The lower, or lesser, of two divisions of the priesthood. Sometimes called the Levitical priesthood. It was named for Aaron, the brother of Moses, “because it was conferred upon Aaron and his seed” in antiquity. JS and other church leaders taught that the...

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holding the keys of the ministering of angels and of the gospel of repentance and baptism.11

Positing the existence of multiple priesthoods was not unique. In 1827, Alexander Crawford, a Scottish minister living in Canada, discussed three distinct priesthoods: a patriarchal priesthood (which he also called a priesthood after the “order of Melchizedec”), an Aaronical priesthood (originally held by Aaron), and a priesthood held by Jesus Christ. Alexander Campbell and the Disciples of Christ were influenced by Crawford’s ideas, though Campbell differed somewhat in his conception of the priesthood, arguing that God had given a “priesthood” to the tribe of Levi and a “high priesthood” to Aaron and his sons. As a former associate of Campbell, Sidney Rigdon was probably familiar with these ideas. (Campbell, Delusions, 11; Staker, Hearken, O Ye People, 148–151.)  


The revelation traced the lineage of the two priesthoods, noting that the greater priesthood was held by Moses, who received it from a line of individuals (including Melchizedek) who had ultimately received it from God. Aaron, meanwhile, held the lesser priesthood, which was passed to his descendants until it reached John the Baptist. Both priesthoods, the revelation posited, are eternal, and men in the Church of Christ

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
could become the “sons of Moses” and the “sons of Aaron” by receiving these priesthoods and “magnifying there calling.” Doing so would enable these “sons” to enter the temple

A sacred edifice “built unto the Lord.” In both the Bible and Book of Mormon, temples were built as places of worship. As early as 1830, church members expected to build a temple in the New Jerusalem, or city of Zion. Revelations in 1830 and 1831 indicated...

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that the Saints would construct in 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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, allowing them to receive God’s glory that would fill the temple. Some of this information seems a culmination of ideas first expressed in JS’s revisions to passages in Hebrews, Genesis, and Exodus, which were completed in the six months leading up to September.12

Faulring et al., Joseph Smith’s New Translation of the Bible, 69–71. See also, for example, New Testament Revision 2, part 2, pp. 139–140 [Joseph Smith Translation, Hebrews 7:3, 19–21, 25–26]; Old Testament Revision 1, p. 34 [Joseph Smith Translation, Genesis 14:27–40]; and Old Testament Revision 2, p. 70 [Joseph Smith Translation, Exodus 34:1–2]; see also Godfrey, “Culmination of Learning,” 175.  


The revelation also explained how the different offices in the church are connected to the two priesthoods. The offices of elder and bishop

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. JS appointed Edward Partridge as the first bishop in February 1831. Following this appointment, Partridge functioned as the local leader of the church in Missouri. Later revelations described a bishop’s duties as receiving...

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, it states, are “appendages” to the high priesthood, or to the office of high priest; the offices of teacher and deacon, meanwhile, are appendages to the lesser priesthood, or to the office of priest.13

For use of the term “high priesthood” to refer to the office of high priest, see, for example, Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 107 (partial)]. For use of the term “lesser priesthood” to refer to the office of priest, see McLellin, Journal, 25 Oct. 1831.  


High priests, elders, and priests, the revelation continued, have an obligation to travel to proclaim the gospel, while teachers and deacons are responsible for watching over the church in local congregations.
After providing a detailed explanation of the greater and lesser priesthoods, their offices, and their duties, the revelation emphasized the necessity of preaching to the world and provided an extensive discussion of many aspects of missionary work. Revelations from 1830, 1831, and 1832 called specific individuals on missions,14

See, for example, Revelation, July 1830–A [D&C 24]; Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52]; and Revelation, 7 Mar. 1832 [D&C 80].  


but few revelations gave general procedural instructions about missionary work.15

A 1 November 1831 revelation provided instructions on missionary work to Orson Hyde, Luke Johnson, Lyman Johnson, William Smith, and “all the faithful Elders of my church,” and a 1 December 1831 revelation to JS and Sidney Rigdon regarding preaching contained the universalizing instruction “whoso readeth let him understand and receive also.” A 10 January 1832 revelation likewise instructed “the Elders of the church of the Living God” to “continue preaching the gospel.” (Revelation, 1 Nov. 1831–A [D&C 68:7]; Revelation, 1 Dec. 1831 [D&C 71]; Revelation, 10 Jan. 1832 [D&C 73].)  


This 22–23 September revelation, however, provided direction on who should serve missions, how they should serve, how they should receive sustenance while serving, what they should proclaim, and what would happen to those who did not accept their message. These instructions parallel New Testament accounts of the resurrected Jesus Christ’s directions to the eleven apostles before his ascension into heaven. As in those accounts, Christ tells the high priests in this revelation that they have a responsibility to preach to all nations and to baptize those who believe. Signs will follow the believers, the revelation continues, and the Lord will go before them, just as Christ promised the ancient apostles that he would be with them always, “even unto the end of the world.”16

Matthew 28:20.  


The revelation specifically refers to “Eleven high Priests save one” (perhaps a reference to the eleven apostles to whom Christ spoke in the New Testament) and calls these high priests “apostles” and “friends” of Jesus Christ. Although many had preached the gospel before this time, this revelation seemed to launch a more urgent and comprehensive missionary campaign, even including in its preaching assignments individuals such as Bishop Newel K. Whitney

3/5 Feb. 1795–23 Sept. 1850. Trader, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Samuel Whitney and Susanna Kimball. Moved to Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York, 1803. Merchant at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York, 1814. Mercantile clerk for...

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, who generally oversaw temporal, not spiritual, concerns.
Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

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, who was serving as JS’s scribe, probably recorded the revelation as JS dictated it.17

A version of the life sketch of Evan Greene in the possession of Greene’s descendants states that Oliver Cowdery came into the room as JS was dictating the revelation and then, after discovering that no one was writing it down, served as scribe. This account is suspect, however, because minutes from Missouri meetings place Cowdery in Missouri at both the end of August and the first of October, making it highly unlikely that he was in Kirtland in late September. (Richards, “Brief Life Sketch of Evan Melbourne Greene,” 1; Minute Book 2, 24 Aug. and 2 Oct. 1832.)  


Williams also inscribed a copy of this revelation that was given to Whitney

3/5 Feb. 1795–23 Sept. 1850. Trader, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Samuel Whitney and Susanna Kimball. Moved to Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York, 1803. Merchant at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York, 1814. Mercantile clerk for...

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, stating that he was transcribing it “for N K, Whitney and Joseph the Seer.” Whitney and JS traveled together in New York

Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...

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and other states in October 1832, and the copy was likely made for the two men to carry with them on that trip.18

Letter to Emma Smith, 13 Oct. 1832; JS History, vol. A-1, 240.  


Williams and JS also made a copy of the revelation in Revelation Book 2, probably soon after the revelation was dictated.19

Historical Introduction to Revelation Book 2.  


Parts of the revelation—including a “new song” on millennial themes, a condemnation of the church for neglecting the Book of Mormon, and the explanation of appendages to the greater and lesser priesthoods—were discussed in early 1833 issues of the church’s periodical The Evening and the Morning Star. A conference of high priests also wrote a letter in January 1833 calling church members in 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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to repentance in conformance with instructions given in the revelation.20

“The Book of Mormon,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Jan. 1833, [3]; “Some of Mormon’s Teaching,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Jan. 1833, [4]; “The Church of Christ,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Mar. 1833, [1]–[2]; Letter to Edward Partridge and Others, 14 Jan. 1833.  


Since at least six elders and ten high priests heard portions of the revelation while it was dictated, it is probable that information in it was also spread through word of mouth.

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