A review of the Last Lecture
Ronald D. Dennis, trans. and ed., Defending the Faith: Early Welsh Missionary Publications (Provo, Utah: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2003).
J14 [JONES, Dan.] Adolygiad ar ddarlith olaf y Parch. E. Roberts, Rymni, yn erbyn “Mormoniaeth.” (A review of the last lecture of the Rev. E. Roberts, Rhymni, against “Mormonism.”) Rhydybont: Printed by John Jones, Rhydybont, [1848.]
12 pp. 17 cm. Welsh Mormon Writings 18.
Dan Jones’s 40-page A review of the lectures of the Rev. E. Roberts (J13) did little to discourage the determined Baptist minister of Rhymni. On the evening of 2 November 1847, two months following his first two lectures in Dowlais, Roberts delivered yet another lecture against the Church at the Ebenezer Chapel in Merthyr Tydfil. Jones saw to it that a copy of A review (J13) was put into Roberts’s hands before this third lecture so that he would have “the advantage of seeing his false ideas” (A review of the last lecture, p. ).
The following week, on 10 November 1847, a lecture was delivered (presumably by Jones) at the White Lion Inn in Merthyr Tydfil to review Roberts’s latest presentation. Over thirty of Roberts’s accusations were enumerated and condemned, and it was obvious that those in attendance “loathed the slanderous, disgraceful and unwarranted attacks” that had been launched against the Church (A review of the last lecture, p. 7).
Jones’s publication is a series of refutations of Roberts’s accusations and, as Jones sees them, contradictions. Jones announces that Roberts and others can spare themselves the trouble of preparing their elegies and funeral sermons for Mormonism, and then he declares this prophecy: “There will be a call for the funeral sermons for Mr. Davies from Dowlais, Roberts from Rhymni, . . . together with all her persecutors before she [the Church] dies; yea, before there is even one sign of illness!” (p. 10).
On 29 November 1847, Roberts lectured once more against the Church while in North Wales. No further mention is made of him in Church publications until 1850, when a note is inserted in the January Zion’s Trumpet: “He [Roberts] was thrown from Rhymni to North Wales, and from North Wales to Liverpool where he now earns his living hawking tea, having been excommunicated from the Baptists for transgressions we do not wish to bring to mind” (p. 32).
A Review of the Last Lecture of the Rev. E. Roberts, Rhymni, Against “Mormonism.”
According to the previous announcement, the above-mentioned man appeared at the pulpit of the Ebeneser Chapel (Baptists), Merthyr, Tuesday night, the second of November. We had sent him the Review of his lectures in Dowlais, so he could have the advantage of seeing his mistakes. This was the first thing to come under the attention of the speaker, and, without acknowledging any good or usefulness in it, he condemned it entirely! It was too full of errors for him to begin to review it, he said; and he gave us two examples, namely, 1. Because it greets the reader with the words “you have here,” instead of thou hast here! Would he not consider it an insult, if he were greeted with thou instead of you? 2. Because the book mentions the word “debate,” when, says he, there was no debate, and that he had not called on us to debate. And at the same time he held the other side of the debate in his hand, namely the Review. “You have here,” that is, in the book, was the sentence. These are all the examples he saw fit to quote from a book containing forty pages, before completely condemning it. But what shocked us the most was that Mr. R. accused the author of using abusive language! And that he had used the word “lie” too often; “it should not be allowed to call each other liars,” and with the next breath, he shouted at the top of his voice, “I declare that this is a lying Review!” It is difficult to lead a man from his usual habit, is it not ? It was he and his witnesses who proved the lie against him, and not the book. “His own lips testified against him.” But the surprise was, I say, that a man who had searched the depths of the language, then broke its boundaries, and borrowed from other languages abusive names to throw at us—the man who called us Necromancers, witches, ignorant magicians, worse than infidels, baboons, monkeys, and many other names too abusive for us to list; yes, it was this man who is so white, so pure, and so holy, and so dignified, as to condemn us now for using a word so ugly as “lie!” We have heard of the brethren’s accuser appearing in the guise of an angel before this time. If one insists on knowing who is the blackguard, let him read the correspondence of our dignified accuser in the Star of Gomer for November. There we have examples of his alleged dignity, written, remember, for the express purpose of being printed in a religious publication in “this enlightened age,” yes, by one who professes the title of devout Evangelist! Notice our accuser’s dignified sentences; here they are—”These superstitious and enchanting deceivers;” his reference, to be sure, is to us, his fellowmen! Notice further, “This is the most ignorant, shameless, superstitious, and devilish sect [if this is not abusive language, for goodness sake, what is abusive language?] that has ever appeared under the guise of religion; it is almost too much of a compliment to the devil for anyone to bother much about them, by speaking or writing of them,” says the man who accuses us of abusive language!
Now, it is seen that “a whore is who shouts whore first;” and so it is here. If anyone, anywhere, yes, even Mr. Davies himself, can improve on the foregoing abusive language, he surely deserves the cap from off the head of our accuser. For our part, we readily concede him the victory in this business, and we are pleased that he is sufficiently honest to admit that he is paying the devil a compliment by reviling and persecuting the children of God! Who else would try so zealously to get you to worship him? You could refuse to do his bidding without causing loss to anyone. It is quite shameful for you to go about worshiping the devil like this during the week, and then be paid for serving God on the Sabbath. You cannot, despite your pomp, serve two Masters any longer without the public learning of your tricks, and then perhaps pulling their purse strings tighter as a result. And then, dear me, what will you have? I can imagine hearing you cry as did that man long ago,—”I cannot work, and I am too ashamed to beg.” “Playing tricks,” is it? Your religious neighbors are “deceived enchanters,” are they?—those who you have admitted profess the New and the Old Testaments? But that is sufficient to show that the chief blackguard is the one who calls the innocent a blackguard.
The lecturer also said that he had written down the lectures he delivered at Dowlais, and that it was the same thing, word for word, that could be heard in this last lecture; and he beseeched everyone to note that anything from the Review that differed from this lecture was a lie. So we ourselves noted this, by writing it down just as we had written the others; and since he promised the same things “word for word” tonight; and since we reviewed those lectures of his so carefully in the Review, we shall not trouble ourselves much here except to show that he, like the spider when in too much haste for its prey, has spun his own web about himself so that he cannot move. Or, to give an additional example, to show that the more our persecutor struggled to come out of the mud, the deeper he sank into it. We had assumed that he would deny those assertions that fettered him the tightest when confronted with them; consequently, expecting to see his lectures, and his home stroke in black and white, we delayed the publication of the Review as long as we did; but we waited in vain, because he had “smelled the rat.” We treated the gentleman quite tenderly at first, because we thought he might be so foolish as to actually believe his own lectures and, consequently, that he could be consciously persecuting the children of God in his ignorance like Saul of old; but by now we have sufficient facts that definitely deny the man any truthfulness, and his obstinance continues to assert knowing, false accusations that are so impudent as to prove that it was not a conscientious Saul we had in our clutches, but rather a cruel Nero to the extent of the reach of his own clutches. Therefore, we quote a few of the many differences between this last lecture and the Dowlais lectures, although he promised they were the same. And since they are written down, if they do not come out “word for word,” his divergent conclusions cannot be excused by putting the blame on his memory.
He did not utter a word here, as he did in Dowlais, 1, “That Christianity was changeless:” see Review, p. 5. 2nd, he did not mention “Of all extremes, extremes in religion are the worst:” see Review, p. 6. By now he has learned better than to shout, 3rd, “Do not listen to them:” see Review, p. 7. Despite that, he set himself straight in the minds of his listeners by telling of the deceivers of past centuries, but he denied that he was saying that the alleged pregnancy of Ann Lee, or Joanna Southcott, of the Holy Ghost was an example of a Joe Smith! rather that proved, he said, that claiming miracles and revelations was nothing new! But he did not have to search the tales of bad men to prove that statement, for he could get even stronger proofs from the Bible, if he dared to come to the field under flying colors, that professing miracles and revelations is something very old! Thus we see that the man’s purpose in noting those examples was to prove that claiming miracles and revelations in every age is shameful deceit and heresy, or at least, this is what his logic proves, regardless of what he intended! And do we not remember proving before that this man is a complete deist at heart? and what additional proof is needed besides his own logic? He declared and denied many times that those referred to were, and were not, examples of a “Joe Smith.” He has learned better by now than to utter a word about 4, “the Compass of the Sailor, &c.” see Review, p. 14. No word about 5, the “Alpha and Omega;” Review, p. 13. But it would be too lengthy a task to note all the differences there were between the two lectures. The foregoing is sufficient to show how truthfully he can read his own writing.
Next, we see his historical distortion as follows:—He quoted many tales of our professed enemies to prove the origin, the translation, and the content of the Book of Mormon, together with the character of its translator, &c., asserting further that this was the Mormons’ own history, and once he quoted a little from Joseph Smith’s own history: and it would be a great surprise if there were one man present so blind as not to see the difference between the latter and the former! The former said that Joe Smith was a wanderer, a madman, a money digger, a Necromancer, &c., and that he translated the Book of Mormon with the aid of a “peep stone,” with his head in a hat, and with blankets between him and his scribe, &c. And again our lecturer declared shamelessly that this was the Mormons’ own history, while at the same time he himself undoubtedly knew, and it was amply obvious to everyone from what he read at the time from the Saints’ own history, if nothing else, that the former were their enemies’ assertions. If it was the Mormons who published those things, where were they published? what book, country, or time? Again, we say, if it was the Mormons who said that those two stones were in Joe’s possession for years, and that he looked through them into the earth for treasures; and if it is they who say they were in the stone chest at the same time, as our lecturer asserts, in the name of reason, why did he not produce that history, and name the witness, his writing, the page, &c.? Certainly, we have the right to request as much proof as that of his assertions, despite the greatness of his infallibility; and though we have requested proofs before, there is nothing to be had except continual assertions, “that it is the history of the Mormons.” This fabrication about our history is similar to the fabrication about our character with that disgraceful Address concerning our denomination in the Star of Gomer for November, and the two writings shout “My father, my father,” in the face of the same man. But we deny that the foregoing things tell the history of the Mormons, and we shall continue to deny it until we have proof to the contrary, which shall never be had. And if the history of the Mormons is so sweet to this man, why does he declare from his pulpit in Dowlais, that our historical book is a BOOK SHOWING THE DEVILISHNESS OF JOE? But to come closer still. We ask what was the true history of the author and the origin of the same Book of Mormon in Dowlais by the same man? Oh, he assured us there on the basis of nothing less than an affidavit of the godly widow and daughter of the godly reverend, namely Mr. S. Spaulding, that he was the true author of that book of which the same lecturer upon reading the same essay “word for word” in Merthyr says that “Joe Smith was its author!” The same author read from the same essay in Dowlais, that it was in New Salem, state of Massachusetts, that the Book of Mormon was composed. In Merthyr he read from the same essay “word for word,” that it was close to the town of Manchester, the western corner of the state of New York where the same book came to light, although there are about 1,000 miles between the places! In Dowlais, he read from the same essay that the book of Mormon was composed in 1812. In Merthyr, he proved irrefutably by reading from the same essay “word for word,” that it was composed in the year 1827, or 1830. That was quite a strange essay, was it not? Yes, we think that this is the man who has the peep stone, or rather the transparent peep essay! Indeed, our lecturer’s essay is a rather miraculous one, if it says word for word in one place and the other, and yet so completely contradictory with respect to the same thing! We see here that the miraculous essay of this denier and mocker of miracles cannot be reconciled with itself, nor with its author, until he proves that Joe Smith and Solomon Spaulding are the same person—until he takes the city of New Salem under his miraculous wing, and carries it about a thousand miles to the west, and matches it to the other places mentioned—until his logic proves to us that 1812 is the same date as 1827, or 1830! Despite how miraculous these things would be, Mr. R. must either accomplish them all literally, before he can substantiate his assertion, namely “that he would give the same lecture word for word as in Dowlais,” or admit that he did not read his essay “word for word” in the two places. If he chooses to do the former, namely the miraculous, we shall yield to him with great deference, for we do not profess such miraculous power as that. Yet, if he does not do that, he must admit that while trying to show our Review to be a lie, he has dug a ditch and has fallen into it himself; yes, he must admit that it is he who is the public liar! You will rise up courteously this time, will you not, friend? If you do, you will see us on the bank of the ditch ready to extend a hand to help you up from that mud again, although it is very dirty. Come, come, do not be stubborn any longer; believe me, that does not do you a bit of good. Do and say what you will against Mormonism; you will be knocked down at every try as surely as you kick against divine pricks. For your own sake we say, leave your “horse and your boots in the mud,” and at all costs save your own life, anyway. This Mormonism is a very thorny thing to the dogs who wish to devour it, is it not, Mr. Roberts? People are often heard complaining as they flee to the North with their mouths bleeding because they squeezed it a little too hard and hastily, until its thorns went all the way to the quick! But if given fair play, it is one of the most gracious, most courteous, and loveliest things you have ever seen. Not Mormonism, rather some “white hobgoblins of another color,” are those whom you torture so splendidly. “You have awoke the wrong passenger, Sir.” What was the real reason (tell the truth for once), that you were so silent about the Spaulding Story in Merthyr? Not a word, neither hew nor mew did you utter about something so important, and something that held such a connection with, yes, the very root and pivot of your account of the Book of Mormon, as you said in Dowlais!
But what are we doing giving the man such careful scrutiny, and bothering to gainsay his accusations, when he does not believe them himself. Oh, no; he does not know that Mormonism is deceit—that J. Smith was a madman—that it is devilish doctrine, or anything else, although those are his assertions: for (listen people!) Mr. R. boldly says in public that he will become a Mormon immediately if he can see one, yes, just one little miracle! Well, this is an admission that either he does not believe our religion to be as devilish as he portrayed it, or that he will sell himself to the devil to please his eyes! This is also an admission that he does not know whose servant he himself is now, or who are those he persecutes so zealously! The scriptures show us that the servants of the devil will work great miracles and wonders, and will deceive many, yes, even causing fire to come down from the heavens in the sight of men. It is those, and not the servants of God, who proselytize Mr. Roberts and his kind way ahead of the others, for he will be bound, according to his own logic, to believe and follow those who work miracles for him, whatever may be their beliefs, their principles, whoever may be their God, and whatever may be their fate! Whatever they have must be what he has, wretched man— their people his people, their God his God, and as they do, so he will do, and their hell will be his hell—just for him to have one little miracle!!
You Baptists, those who claim Christ’s religion, is this the kind of pastor you have? What! this one will lead his whole flock to the wolves’ pen, says he, when those false prophets come who work miracles! Oh, foolishness! Is this the language of a servant of God? Is this the conduct of a good shepherd, or a wolf? Where can one find a supposed servant of God denying miracles, and at the same time calling on those whom he calls the servants of the devil, to perform one little miracle before his eyes, promising, if they do so, that he will renounce his entire former religion, and that he will follow them? His assertions were almost too poor and disgraceful to notice it before now; but here he is, placing himself and his entire religion on auction, as the wretched Negro is placed to the highest bidder. One pities the black man, poor thing, because he cannot escape his captivity: he is forced; but as for this white man, he puts himself up for auction voluntarily! yes, he offers to sell body and soul to the first one who performs a small miracle for him. Well, no one knows whether God or the devil will buy him: neither does he himself know yet, for the one who comes first with his little miracle will have him, says he on his word! And since he can be had only on miraculous conditions, it is certain we shall never have him, for we never expect to be sufficiently powerful to buy him on our own; and if God buys him this way, it will be more work to mold him and look after him than we would wish to do; for he would insist on walking (not by faith, as Paul says), but by sight; and when he lost his sight so he could not see a miracle, he would instantly lose his belief and his life. Ah me! this is the kind of man we are dealing with! Wretched man; it is heartfelt pity we feel for him, and for those who are blinded by him; and now, we shall leave him soaking in that mud a little longer, since he refuses our help to come out, and perhaps Mr. R. will be kind enough to inform us whether he gets his asking price for himself, and whether it was God or the devil who bought him!
Now then, gentle reader, we offer you a more excellent, a more precise, and a more sure way to put an end to the debate, whether Mormonism is true or not; a way, we say, that our opponents cannot offer to anyone. This is it in truth. Do you wish to know whether Joseph Smith was a godly man? And do you wish to have a sure knowledge as to whether the gospel of the Son of God in all its power is what the Mormons have? Well, obey its conditions with a sincere heart, and then God will show you, by imparting to you yourselves godly proofs through his Holy Spirit, according to the promises of Jesus Christ, that it is true that God, yes, through one as lowly as Joseph Smith, imparted to us the stewardship of his gospel. We do not attribute much importance to what anyone believes about J. Smith, or about any person, if we can but get men to obey the gospel of the Son of God, for Jesus Christ, and not Joseph Smith, is the one who is preached in our midst. If God does not prove to those who obey this plan that J. Smith was his servant, we shall not bother to persuade them to believe that; they may do as they choose. On the other hand, after God has proved that to them, they will not seek proofs of that from us. This is the way to satisfy every honest man now instead of shouting, “you deceivers, work miracles for us, &c.” Yes, this is what our wise master said before us, “If any man will do my Father’s will, he shall know of the doctrine [Mormon] whether it be of God.” Thus everyone is able to make a definite decision as to whether it is truth or falsehood that is preached against us; yes indeed, in this way one can have proofs from God independently of all that is said in favor of or against “Joe Smith,” and every other man. Well, can one ask for fairer reasoning than this? Is there a way to have a surer or simpler way? Why refuse this fair offer, then? Again we say, if God does not prove that the Book of Mormon is a godly book, after it has been put to the test, cease forever to believe it because we say it is true; and on the other hand, after God proves it is true, what does it avail, what does it matter, that the horrid shouts of all the wolves in the world call it a lie?
We consider that this closes the matter from our side, under divine and eternal clasps, and that it shows the folly and dishonesty of him who argues against an offer that is so fair and sincere as this without proving his point.
A Lecture was delivered in the Cymreigyddion Hall, Merthyr, Wednesday night, the 10th of the same month, when Mr. Roberts’s Lecture, at the Ebeneser Chapel, (Baptists), Merthyr, was reviewed. The Hall was full of courteous and attentive listeners. There it was proved that Mr. R. had in one lecture leveled over thirty false accusations at the Mormons and their religion, and they were answered, not with baseless assertions like those of our persecutor, but with scriptures, facts, and truthful and irrefutable accounts. It was obvious from the listeners’ cheerfulness and attentiveness at the time, together with all the evidence that has reached our ears since then, that our listeners love the truth, and loathe our persecutors’ libelous, shameful, and needless attacks upon us because of our religion. Another notable fact that proves that these persecutors involuntarily assist the truth is that our Hall has been filled with more listeners, yes, every Sabbath since, it has been overflowing. And furthermore, we say that we have even better facts that everything, this included, works together for good, namely, we baptized 10 in Merthyr during the week that he lectured, and several, more or less, every week since then until now. Yes, and the increase continues, and the hopes increase, and the Saints are gladly enjoying blessings and divine gifts more and more through it all. In scarcely any other matter do our persecutors more patently display their blindness and their folly than in their misbelief that they can exterminate Mormonism from the country! This proves that they do not know what they are doing. It proves their ignorance of it, and consequently their inability to oppose it. Again, we say to them all as one, friends, “you have come to the wrong pew.”
“A Lecture on Mormonism.”
After writing the foregoing, the December issue of Star of Gomer came to hand, and in it there was an article of the above title, the work of some Dafydd Lewis, Merthyr, claiming to give an account of the aforementioned meeting; and we quote the following from it as examples to prove what we have previously said, that is, the impossibility of getting a true account, description, or even a sentence from the mouths or pens of our persecutors; and everyone who knows the two sides sees that this Dafydd Lewis, like the others, must be well experienced at weaving ropes of intentional lies for him to dare to send such an untruthful string of them to the Star of Gomer; and that he is totally unconcerned about the truth for him to put his name to such an article in the face of many hundreds around Merthyr and Dowlais, and even as far as “Bristol also,” who know through experience that there is hardly even a hint of truth to be had in his writing! What will the numerous and respectable crowds who have gathered regularly in Dowlais to listen to the Mormons think about the following?—”I would not have paid so much public attention to such obvious heresy in Merthyr, had it not been for the success and the good (alias the lack of success and the damage to their craft) that followed our respected (?) brother on the same topic in Dowlais, a few weeks ago. His solid facts [weak and shameful tales]—his detailed account [but totally one-sided] and his reasons [assertions] which were unanswerable [that were all answered effectively in the Review, which had the facts at the time, not to mention several lectures, until they are a mock and a disgrace] to enlighten the people of Dowlais, [yes to enlighten them so they can see clearly the foolish, deceptive reasons of the lecturer], so that some of the Mormons have left the deceitful system, (no, we say, they did not succeed in getting so much as one to leave the Saints through the entire, shameful crusade against them; and if what we say is not true, let them publish their names to the world so it can be seen who and how many they are, for we have published before that in Dowlais not one left them afterwards, and the poor boy they paid to persecute us has now repented with all his heart of so doing; it is unlikely that anyone will leave, rather they were strengthened in the doctrine more than ever. It is true that the old prophet of Caersalem prophesied, without a syllable of truth, that it would be so; and he is so sure as that that the truth is totally to the contrary; and anyone who doubts can have facts to prove that hardly a week has passed since then that several have not been baptized by the Saints, yes, in Dowlais, which adds to the host of facts we already have to prove that our old and cruel persecutor from Dowlais is a false prophet, as well as his disciples who jabber the same thing, like parrots imitating each other. What will they not say, those who are so presumptuous as to proclaim this in public and in the light of day? That the Saints in Dowlais are “few,” and “a laughing stock” is just as untruthful as the rest of his assertions, as can be seen irrefutably by our statistics available in the account of the Glamorganshire Conference in Star of the Saints for January, 1848. And here let this Dafydd Lewis be ashamed, if there is any shame in him! Another quote that shows the malice and unfairness of the reporter is as follows:—”After Mr. Roberts delivered these things in Dowlais, one of the Mormons wrote a so-called Review of his lectures; Mr. R. brought this absurd patchwork to the attention of the respectable audience before him with exceptional skill (his usual skill can be seen at the beginning of this treatise! from the entire pamphlet only the two examples we noted!! This is the style of these men, that is to proclaim anathemas with infallibility on everyone and everything that cannot be refuted! so it is here, as the Review proves for itself to everyone whose principles are honest. Why would they not allow the public to choose their own opinion, especially since they claim that their aim is to ensure fair play to the nation?) showing the weakness of the system (in what way, Sir? What, he proved? no, he offered not one proof, except his impudent and baseless assertions) that had no stronger defense for its assertions than what was in that stupid and idiotic booklet.” Yes, here it is again, the same old dogmatic and defenseless rigmarole as always. That booklet contains arguments that are too strong for Mr. R. or any of his dupes to refute, but despite that, they search diligently for the most abusive sentences to destroy and condemn whatever they are unable to gainsay. If their assessment of the booklet is correct, it would be more reasonable for the men to urge people to read it so they can see what it is, instead of showing their guilty consciences by fearing that someone will read it. But, we do not fear their verdict, since the Review is all over the country testifying in its own behalf, until even the honest Baptists admit that it is the home stroke to their lectures, and that they are unable to do better. One of the respected Baptist preachers in these environs came to us soon afterwards with the intention of being baptized by us, admitting that the Review had thoroughly convinced him of the deceit and wickedness of the Baptist preachers, and of the truthfulness of Mormonism! We baptized several of their deacons also, and members, and others will yet come soon. Another example of his shameful impudence is as follows:—”Mr. R. said clearly in public that he would leave aside the historical facts (?) that he had in order to prove the deceit of Mormonism, and that he would venture into the land of the Mormon BIBLE alone—yes, he said that! how much longer until we have the truth about that? It would amount to the same thing were he to assert that he could change the moon! We have proved over and over again that our “Bible” is the same as all the Christians profess to believe. We do not have another Bible; and these men know that perfectly well, and despite everything “Mormon Bible” is still their prattle. In the name of reason when will we have an end to such slanderous assertions and promises, and finally begin to see the fulfillment of some of them? We say again, the Holy Bible is the Bible of the Mormons also; observe closely this time if you will!!! and what reason is there to continually claim otherwise; who knows better? Our enemies always slander us and scorn us for that!— proving from that (says he) that it is a blatant forgery.” He declared in Dowlais that it was a forgery of the “Spaulding Romance,” but remember that he completely contradicted himself about that in Merthyr! assuming that it was the Book of Mormon he meant when he said Mormon Bible. We also challenge him to substantiate this assertion, and until he does so he has no right to the credence of any truthful man, for it is too much of a task for him or anyone else to prove the Book of Mormon such, except he twist it and quote from it that which is not in it, as he did in Dowlais shamefully; see Review; “but as for their assertions, it is too much work for any Mormon doctor to heal them from their wounds in the environs of Merthyr and Dowlais ever again.” This is also a lie, and Mr. Lewis knows it, or at least he should know from the crowds, more numerous than ever, who come to listen to them every Sunday before his very eyes, that our growth is greater than ever before, and if he doubts this (which in his heart he cannot) let him come on Sunday night to the Cymreigyddion Hall, and if he can get a place to sit, he will have to reduce his great swelling to a smaller circumference than he now judges himself to have. Furthermore, he says, and certainly from the stings of a guilty conscience, “we hope that booklet comes out before the Saints have completely disappeared in this manner;” it will come out, Sir, never fear; if it ever comes out, it will come out before the Saints have disappeared from here, according to the indications we have, for despite everything, we are baptizing ten in a week, practically every week, and we can assure you that the church of the Saints in Merthyr is more numerous, despite all the persecution, than any church of any denomination in Merthyr, and we are using their own numbers! Which do you prefer—to take a count, or to be silent with your constant “few,” fewer, fewest, &c.? Do one thing or the other now, for shame! Now, certainly, we have the right to prophesy a bit about Mormonism, since every contemptible editor, every contemptible preacher, every contemptible shopper, and and every contemptible persecutor have tried their hand at it; and here it is: we prophesy that the “Elegies” written for her, and the “funeral sermons” prepared for her, are all in vain, and that there will never be a need for them; and time will show still more clearly that, just as surely as she is full of the “strength of eternal life,” all those who foretell the ruin and death of Mormonism are false prophets. There will be a call for funeral sermons for Mr. Davies from Dowlais, Roberts from Rhymni, Dafydd Lewis, and the Editor of the Star of Gomer, together with all her persecutors, before she dies; yes, even before she shows one sign of illness! Then we shall see who the false prophets really are; by their fruits ye shall know them. This is our prophecy! We have already quoted more of this disgraceful article than we had intended to quote at the outset; nevertheless, permit us yet to bring to light the following to put the finishing touches on the picture; for this writer was thought to fall short of all the contemptible writers and of nearly all the other Editors who have berated us, except that he remembered to give us the following elegant, evangelical, and kind epithets; namely—”And everyone concurred!” (Everyone, is it? how could you know that, Sir, unless you are omniscient? Oh no, everything was to the contrary; for in the midst of the crowd coming from that meeting all we heard along the streets were men and women expressing their great shock and disappointment that anyone could be so dull as to relate to his fellowmen such unreasonable tales as if truth, while one thing continually contradicted the other. If the reporter could have been with us he would have heard the lecturer being jeered and reviled worse than we have ever heard any other speaker treated before.) “Well, well, he was the most foolish of all; instead of disproving their principles from the scriptures, he did not offer one scripture at all,” (said the people around us). “Oh no, (said another) he knew better than to offer a scripture, or anything else but the old tales of the enemies to disprove the religion of our neighbors!” “But everyone concurred with Iorwerth (said he) that the deceitful “Saints” could easily be listed with the witches (but despite that, could they not be listed with the defaulters?) and the fortune tellers, and they and their Mormonism could be declaimed in the language of Twm of Nant, &c.” Yes, reader, again this is the usual finishing stroke, condemning their religious neighbors as witches, fortune tellers, &c., totally without proof, and when we defend ourselves, they shout blackguardism, lies, &c. Who is so blind that he cannot see their trickery and their jealousy for the truth? Yes, there are hundreds in every corner who are opening their eyes each year, and several hundred have joined Mormonism this year, even from among the disciples of our persecutors. Almost every day we hear of some of the Baptists, yes, of some of their preachers and their deacons, who come closer so they can hear the other side of what their pastors are persecuting, listening—believing, and being baptized by the Saints, and those we have seen so far are thanking God for turning their attention towards Mormonism through persecution, and they testify they would not take the world for this change in them. While writing the last line, we were told of one of the Baptists, a wife of one of the warriors, who was baptized near here yesterday. These are the effects of the great lecture against us, and the more of them the better as far as we are concerned; go forth persecutors, and take courage, for we and our religion are above your stench. Whatever you do, you benefit our religion. You cannot harm it or hinder it, and whatever you do or say will not be sufficient to keep lovers of the truth from embracing it. Even so, no thanks to you. Who does not pity our country’s corrupt state, seeing that such untruthful and disgraceful rubbish fills the columns of their professed religious publications! Yes, this is the healthful food that those who call themselves “pastors of the country,” and “teachers of the people, &c.,” feed on; yes, this is the language, taste, and reasoning of those who claim to be the “Reverend Evangelists,” and the “pious men” of this enlightened age!! This is how they are for the most part in this district, particularly among the Baptists!! Good heavens! What would be the horrible state of our country if these men held the reins of government? Surely it would be the end of the world for the Saints, and everyone else who would not submit to their ipse dixit. May the King of the Saints put the reins once again in the hand of the Inquisition, rather than within reach of the claws of these cruel and persecuting Baptists.
The Crusade of Roberts from Rhymni even in Denbigh !
Elder A. Evans writes, from Denbigh, that on the 29th of November the above man delivered there the same untruthful account of the poor Mormons as he did in Dowlais. He began his lecture as follows:—”I am not fond of this work [namely, of “complimenting the Devil!”] but I would be glad if there were one here strong enough to oppose me on this topic (said he, after supposing that he had arrived over a hundred miles from its defenders!). The leader of the Mormons for Wales wrote a Review of this lecture, (said he) but it does not deserve an answer except to mention it, since it has nothing to do with me, &c.” Oh really, Sir! Nothing to do with you, is it? Oh, yes it has; it places the noose around your neck, or rather it shows how you yourself placed your head in the noose, and the way in which you wended your way to the platform of your own gallows; and there it holds you hanged in the presence of all honest men, despite your shouting, Pooh-pooh, beneath attention, &c. What lad cannot shout that as well as you? yes, it could be taught to a parrot, who could relate it as prettily as you did. Woe betide you, if something that flogs you as severely as does the aforementioned Review, is beneath your attention! Good heavens, what is deserving of your attention, I wonder! Perhaps the stars and the planets beneath your feet are also things not worth noticing. If that is not worthy of your attention, we shall endeavor to draw your attention to the next thing, if you ever again make yourself the object of attention. Surely your vision is extremely high! It is very strange that something so lowly as Mormonism has captured so much of your attention! You likely did not suppose her to be so thorny, so prickly, as to be able to defend herself, but remember, she has yet to be shaken from her dress.
A. Evans informs us that he publicly asked permission, after the speaker had finished, “if he might be permitted to announce that he intended to disprove that lecture out on the road straight away.” In response to this the minister shouted, unfairly, “no you may not, no you may not.” No thanks to him, for the announcement was in the question. Then A. Evans reminded the speaker of his challenge at the beginning for anyone to oppose him on the subject, and he said he was ready to render that simple kindness right then and there, if he would permit him. At that he saw his trap, and he thought the only hole into which he could escape was to shout, blackguardism, beneath his attention, &c. And instead of allowing the man to defend his religion after daring him to do so, the Rev. E. Roberts, from Rhymni, the Balaam of the Sectarians began: yes, he threatened to take A. Evans to lodgings in the jail, if he uttered a word!!! Neither did we expect any better from him, because we have seen a number of others like him, with the same noble task of persecuting the children of God, working in the same way, and we know that he does not have a single drop of truth in him, or else he would not deliver his filthy rubbish so far away, while knowing before he began that they are of such a nature. Certainly, this was the perfect chance to show himself to his old neighbors, and to become an object of boasting; “Mr. Roberts is such a debater, &c.” But, Sir, in your desire for self-aggrandizement, you forgot about the payment for the prize that awaits you; and this is what will catch up with you like a flooding stream, when you have finished dealing with Mormons, and when you have filled the measure of your wickedness. All the people and others who did not hear the lecture went to listen to A. Evans disprove the false accusations, and the greatest majority were surprised that any man, even Roberts himself, could be so foolish as to deliver such tales in public. A. Evans assures us that the lecture was of great benefit to Mormonism, that he baptized one who had been with the Baptists for over sixty years! and several others promised to be baptized soon. We see that all things work together for good. Now we present these defensive truths to the attention of our readers, and we pray that our God will bless them to bring many to embrace the truth as it is in Jesus. Amen.