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Revelation, 23 February 1831 [D&C 42:74–93]

February 23d 1831 the rules and regulations of the Law

Principles given to the church and its members in February 1831 revelations. In January 1831, a revelation promised the saints in New York that the law would be given after they gathered in Ohio. Once in Ohio, on 9 and 23 February 1831, JS dictated two revelations...

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How 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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of 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...

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are to act upon the points of the Law given by Jesus Christ to the Church in the presents of twelve Elders February 9th 1831 as agreed upon by Seven Elders Feby 23d 1831 according to to the commandment of God——
1th The first 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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in the law teaches that all the Elders shall go unto the regions westward and labour to build up Churches unto Christ wheresoever they shall find any to receive them and obey the Gospel of Jesus Christ except Joseph & 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 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 Such as the Bishop

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

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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
Shall appoint to assist him in his duties according to the Law which we have received this commandment as far as it respects these Elders to be sent to the west is a special one for the time being incumbent on the present Elders who shall return when directed by the Holy Spirit

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
——
2d Every person who belongeth to this church of Christ Shall observe all the Commandments [p. [6]]
February 23d 1831 the rules and regulations of the <Law>

Principles given to the church and its members in February 1831 revelations. In January 1831, a revelation promised the saints in New York that the law would be given after they gathered in Ohio. Once in Ohio, on 9 and 23 February 1831, JS dictated two revelations...

View Glossary
How 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
of 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
are to  act upon the points of the Law given by Jesus  Christ to the Church in the presents of twelve  Elders February 9th 1831 as agreed upon by Seven Elders  Elders Feby 23d 1831 according to to the comman dment of God1

This paragraph and the one that follows are not found in any other early copy of this revelation. This introductory paragraph acknowledges the role church elders played on this date in helping JS define procedures for implementing the “points of the Law” dictated on 9 February. The elders acted in response to two previous revelations, one instructing them to “assemble yourselves to gether to agree upon my word,” and the other enjoining, “I give unto you a commandment that when ye are assembled yourselves together ye shall note with a Pen how to act . . . upon the points of my law . . . & thus it shall become a law unto you.” (Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–72]; Revelation, 4 Feb. 1831 [D&C 41:2]; Revelation, Feb. 1831–A [D&C 43:8–9].)  


——
1th The first 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
in the law teaches  that all the Elders shall go unto the regions  westward and labour to build up Churches  unto Christ wheresoever they shall <find> any to  receive them and obey the Gospel of Jesus  Christ except Joseph & 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...

View Full Bio
and 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
 and Such as the Bishop

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

View Glossary

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
Shall appoint to  assist him in his duties according to  the Law which we have received this  commandment as far as it respects these  Elders to be sent to the west is a special one  for the time being incumbent on the  present Elders who shall return when  directed by the Holy Spirit

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
2

Compare to the first part of Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–10].  


——
2d Every person who belongeth to this church of  Christ Shall observe all the Commandments [p. [6]]
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On 22 February 1831, JS wrote to Martin Harris

18 May 1783–10 July 1875. Farmer. Born at Easton, Albany Co., New York. Son of Nathan Harris and Rhoda Lapham. Moved with parents to area of Swift’s landing (later in Palmyra), Ontario Co., New York, 1793. Married first his first cousin Lucy Harris, 27 Mar...

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referencing the “Laws of 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
” that JS had dictated 9 February: “We have received the laws of the Kingdom since we came here and the Disciples

Generally, a follower of Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly appointed...

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in these parts have received them gladly.”1 The next day, 23 February, JS and seven elders met to determine “how 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
of the church of Christ are to act upon the points of the Law,” and the following revelation was recorded. In providing detailed guidance on how to discipline serious transgressors of the moral law, the revelation significantly elaborated on the few lines offered on the subject in the church’s earlier “Articles and Covenants

A foundational document presented at the first conference of the church for the approval of church members. The articles and covenants included a brief historical prologue, a declaration of beliefs, and a description of the offices, ordinances, and procedures...

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.”2
Early members evidently saw the 23 February revelation as building upon the 9 February revelation, also known as “the Law,” by expanding on the guidelines it provided. After this revelation was dictated, “the Law” comprised eight sections in all, five received on 9 February and three on 23 February. Of the earliest extant copies of the Law, only the Symonds Rider

20 Nov. 1792–1 Aug. 1870. Farmer, teacher, minister. Born in Hartford, Windsor Co., Vermont. Son of Joshua Ryder and Marilla. Moved to Hiram, Portage Co., Ohio, 6 Jan. 1814. Married Mahitable Loomis, 12 Nov. 1818, in Portage Co. Served as captain in Ohio ...

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copy, the version featured here, includes all eight sections; it separates the 9 February revelation from the 23 February revelation by including the date and an introductory heading between the fifth and sixth sections. The version found in Revelation Book 1 includes the first five sections, dictated 9 February, as well as a loose leaf containing only the eighth section, or final paragraph, of the 23 February dictation.3

Revelation Book 1, pp. 62–67. A manuscript in Sidney Gilbert’s handwriting and one in Zebedee Coltrin’s both include only the first five parts. An early newspaper version includes only the first two parts. A manuscript in Orson Hyde’s hand includes parts two through four as well as parts seven and eight. (Gilbert, Notebook, [13]–[23]; Coltrin, Diary, [11]–[18]; “Secret Bye Laws of the Mormonites,” Western Courier [Ravenna, OH], 1 Sept. 1831, [1]; Hyde and Smith, Notebook, [12]–[22]; see also Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:1–72].)  


Some later published versions also exclude the first two paragraphs of the 23 February revelation, possibly because those sections seem to summarize content found in the first five sections. Textually, only the eighth and final paragraph in this document employs the divine first-person, which is possibly the reason it was the only portion of the 23 February revelation to be copied into Revelation Book 1.

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