16 April 1843 (Sunday Morning).

16 April 1843 (Sunday Morning). In Temple. [1]

Joseph Smith Diary, by Willard Richards

Meeting at the Temple. A. M. 10 . o. C

Joseph read Bro Pratts [2] letters to the Editors of "T. & Seasons" [3] concerning the death of Lorenzo Barns. [4] & remarked he read it because it was so appropriate to all who had died in the faith.—Almost all who have fallen in these last days, in the church, have fallen in a strange land, this is a strange land. to those who have come from a distance. we should cultivate sympathy for the afflicted among us.

If there is a place on earth. where men should cultivate this Spirit & pour in the oil & wine in the bosom of the afflicted it is this place. and this spirit is manifest here, and although he is a stranger & afflicted when he arrives, h[e] finds a brother & friend ready to administer to his necessities.—another remark, I would esteem it one of the greatest blessings, if I am to be afflicted in this world, to have my lot cast where I can find brothers & friends all around me. but this is not thing referred to it is to have the privilige of having our dead buried on the land where god has appointed to gather his saints together.—& where there will be nothing but saints, where they may have the privilege of laying their bodies where the Son will make his appearance. & where they may hear the sound of the trump that shall call them forth to behold him, that in the morn of the resurrection they may come forth in a body. & come right up out of their graves, & strike hands immediately in eternal glory & felicity rather than to be scattered thousands of miles apart. There is something good & sacred to me. in this thing. The place where a man is buried has been sacred to me.—this subject is made mention of In Book of Mormon & Scriptures. [5] to the aborigines regard the burying places of their fathers is more sacred than any thing else. [6]

When I heard of the death of our beloved bro Barns it would not have affected me so much if I had the opportunity of burying him in the land of Zion. I believe, those who have buried their friends here their condition is enviable. Look at Joseph in Egypt how he required his friends to bury him in the tomb of his fathers.—see the expence & great company & which attended the embalming and the going up of the great company. to his burial. It has always been considered a gret curse not to obtain an honorable buryal. & one of the greatest curses the ancient prophets could put on any one was that man should go without a burial. [7]

I have said, father, I desire to be buried here, & before I go home, but if this is not thy will not may I return, or find some kind friend to bring me back, & gather my friends, who have fallen in foreign lands, & bring them up hither, that we may may all lie together.—

I will tell you what I want, if to morrow I shall be called to lay in yonder tomb. in the morning of the resurrection, let me strike hands with my father, & cry, my father, & he will say my son, my son,—as soon as the rock rends. & before we come out of our graves.

& may we contemplate these things so? Yes, if we learn how to live & how we die when we lie down we contemplate how we may rise up in the morning and it is pleasing for friends to lie down together locked in the arms of love, to sleep, & rocked in each others embrace & renew their conversation.

would you think it strange that I relate what I have seen in vision in relation this interesting theme. [8] Those who have died in Jesus Christ, may expect to enter in to all that fruition of Joy when they come forth, where they have possessed here. so plain was the vision I actually saw men, before they had ascended from the tomb, as though they were getting up slowly, they took each other by the hand & it was my father & my son. my mother & my daughter, my brother & my sister when the voice calls, suppose I am laid by the side of my father.—what would be the first joy of my heart? where is my father—my mother—my sister. they are by my side I embrace them & they me.

It is my meditation all the day & more than my meat & drink to know how I shall make the saints of God to comprehend the visions that roll like an overflowing surge, before my mind.

O how I would delight to bring before you things which you never thought of, but poverty & the cares of the world prevent. but I am glad I have the privilige of communicating to you some things, which if grasped closely will be a help to you when the clouds are gathering. & the storms are ready to burst upon you like peals of thunder. lay hold of these things & let not your knees tremble. nor your hearts faint. what can Earthquakes do. wars. & tornados do? nothing.—all your losses will be made up to you in the resurrection provided you continue faithful. by the vision of the almighty I have seen it.—More painful to me the thought of anhilitation than death. if I had no expectation of seeing my mother Brother & Sisters & friends again my heart would burst in a moment & I should go down to my grave. The expectation of seeing my friends in the morning of the resurrection cheers my soul. and make be bear up against the evils of life. it is like their taking a long journey. & on their return we meet them with increased joy.

God has revealed his son from the heavens. & the doctrine of the resurrection also. & we have a knowledge that these we lay bury here God bring them up again. clothed upon & quickened by the spirit of the great god. & what mattereth it whether we lay them down, or we lay down with them. when we can live keep them no longer

Then let them sink down; like a ship in the storm. the mighty anchor holds the storm so let these truths sink down in our hearts, that we may even here begin to enjoying that which shall be in full hereafter.

Hosanna. Hosanna. Hosanna, to Almighty god that rays of light begin to burst forth upon us even now. I cannot find words to express myself I am not learned. but I have as good feelings as any man. O that I had the the language of the archangel to express my feeling. once to my friends. but I never expect to see

when others rejoice I rejoice. when they mourn I would mourn [9]

to Marcellus Bates. [10] let me administer comfort, you shall soon have the company of your companion in a world of glory [11]— & the friend of Bro. Barns.—& all the saints who are mourning. this has been a warning voice to us all, to be sober & diligent & lay aside mirth & vanity & folly.—& be prepared to die tomorrow. (preached about 2 hours)

…Presst. Joseph said as president of this house. I forbid any man's leaving this house just as we are going to close the meeting. he is no gentleman who will do it. I dont care who it comes from.—if it were from the King of England. I forbid it.

Wilford Woodruff Diary

President J. Smith Addressed the assembly of the saints at the temple of the Lord upon the subject of the saints death burial & resurrection of the saints. He had been requested to preach a funeral sermon by several persons who had died lost friends & he had Just Received information that Elder Lorenzo Barnes had died in England we received this information by a letter from Elder P. P. Pratt. After reading the letter he addressed the assembly in a vary feeling interesting & edefying manner among many other remarks he said he should have been more reconciled to the death of Elder barnes Could his bodey have been laid in the grave in Nauvoo or among the Saints, he said he had vary peculiar feelings relative to recieving an honorable burial with his father [12] he Considered Nauvoo would be a burying place of the Saints & Should he die he considered it would be a great Blessing to be buried with the saints & esspecially to be buried with his father yes he wanted to lie by the side of his father that when the trump of God should sound & the voice of God should say ye Saints arise that when the tomb should birst he could arise from the grave & first salute his father & say O my father! & his father say O my son!! as they took each other by the hand he wished next to salute his brothers & sisters & then the Saints & he said it was upon this principle that the ancients were so particular to have an honorable burial with their fathers as in the case of Joseph, before his death he made his kindred promise to carry his bones to the land of Canann & they did so they embalmed his body took it to the land of Canaan & buryed it with his fathers their is a glory in this that many do not comprehend. It is true that in the resurrection that the bodies will be caught up to meet the Lord & the Saints will all be brought together though they were scattered upon the face of the whole earth yet they would not as readily salute each other as though they lay down & rose up together from the same bed, To bring it to the understanding it would be upon the same principle as though two who were vary friends indeed should lie down upon the same bed at night locked in each other embrace talking of their love & should awake in the morning together they could immediately renew their conversation of love even while rising from their bed but if they were alone & in seperate apartments they could not as readily salute each other as though they were together He remarked that should he live & have an opportunity of gathering his friends who had died together he intended to do it but if he should not live to do it himself he hoped that some of his frie friends would. He wished all of the saints to be comforted with the victory they were to gain by the resurrection it is sufficient to encorage the saint to overcome in the midst of evry trial trouble & tribulation though thunders roar & earthquakes bellow, lightnings flash & wars are upon evry hand yet suffer not a joint to tremble nor let not your heart faint for the great Eloheem will deliver you & if not before the resurrection will set you eternally free from all these things from pain sorrow & death. I have labored hard & sought evry way to try to prepare this people to comprehend the things that God is unfolding to me In speaking of the resurrection I would say that God hath shown unto me a vission of the resurrection of the dead & I saw the graves open & the saints as they arose took each other by the hand even before they got up or while getting up & great Joy & glory rested upon them.

William Clayton Diary

Heard Pres. J preach on the ressurection shewing the importance of being buried with the saints & their relatives in as much as we shall want to see our relatives first & shall rejoice to strike hands with our parents, children &c when rising from the tomb.

Levi Richards Diary

Forenoon meeting in the Temple Pres Smith preached on the resurrection &c.

Rhoda Richards Diary [13]

Brother Wd [Willard Richards] says he has heard the sweetest sermon from Joseph he ever heard in his life.

—16 April 1843

Notes

[1] See History of the Church, 5:360-63, and Teachings, pp. 294-97. The original source for the History of the Church account is the Joseph Smith Diary. The reports of Levi Richards and Rhoda Richards are here published for the first time. A variation of the Wilford Woodruff account is published in Matthias F. Cowley, Wilford Woodruff—Fourth President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: History of His Life and Labors as Recorded in His Daily Journal (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1970), pp. 173-74. The following remarks were intended as a funeral sermon for several of the Saints who had lost loved ones.

[2] Parley P. Pratt.

[3] See Times and Seasons (1 April 1843). The editors of the Church newspaper at the time were John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff.

[4] Lorenzo Barnes (1812-42). Baptized in 1833, Barnes was the first missionary of the Church to die while preaching in a foreign land. In 1852 his body was brought from England and interred in the Salt Lake City cemetery.

[5] Alma 3:1-3; 30:1-2; 57:28.

[6] That is, the Amerindian burial grounds and mounds.

[7] Regarding the burial of Joseph, see Genesis 50:22-6; Exodus 13:19; Joshua 24:32. Regarding the curse of the ancient prophets, see Isaiah 14:19-20 (or 2 Nephi 24:19-20).

[8] Aside from this discourse and the teachings given in the temple, no other account of Joseph Smith's vision exists.

[9] Matthew 5:4; Mosiah 18:9 (8-10).

[10] Marcellus L. Bates. A brother-in-law to Orson Pratt, Bates lost his twenty-year-old wife, Jennette, the first week of February 1843. She was buried in Nauvoo.

[11] This is the closest allusion to the doctrine of eternal marriage the Prophet had yet made in public discourse. See discourse dated 16 July 1843 (1) for his first explicit reference to this subject.

[12] Reference is to Joseph Smith, Sr., the Prophet's father, who died and was buried in Nauvoo in September 1840.

[13] Rhoda Richards (1784-1879) was a native of Framingham, Massachusetts. Baptized in 1838, she was a sister of Willard Richards.