7 April 1841 (Wednesday Morning). Temple Site.

Times and Seasons 2 (15 April 1841): 386-87[1]

Gen. Bennett [2] then read the revelations from "The Book of the Law of the Lord," [3] which had been received since the last general Conference, in relation to writing a proclamation to the kings of the earth, building a Temple in Nauvoo, the organization of the church &c. [4]

Pres. Jos. Smith rose and made some observations in explanation of the same, and likewise of the necessity which existed of building the Temple, that the saints might have a suitable place for worshiping the Almighty, and also the building of the Nauvoo Boarding House, that suitable accomodations might be afforded for the strangers who might visit this city. [5]

—7 April 1841


[1] See History of the Church, 4:339. Not in Teachings. The History of the Church entry is based on the Times and Seasons account. The following remarks were made at the April 1841 General Conference of the Church.

[2] John Cook Bennett.

[3] Begun between 19 January 1841 and 7 April 1841, the "Book of the Law of the Lord" was a compilation of revelations, letters, and journal entries of the Prophet. The very first entry in the record was the revelation referred to in this discourse, D&C 124. Beginning in December 1841, tithes and other donations (particularly those for the temple) were also recorded in the "Law of the Lord."

[4] The text refers to D&C 124. Regarding the proclamation to the kings of the earth, the revelation specified that Robert B. Thompson and John C. Bennett should assist in its writing and dissemination. However, Thompson's premature death and Bennett's apostasy precluded either contributing to the project. Although several attempts were made to write this document, it was not until the spring of 1844 that any work was accomplished. In 1863 William W. Phelps reported that he was specially commissioned in May 1844 to write the "great proclamation" under the direction of the Prophet, and that he had in his possession 22 manuscript pages which Joseph Smith had approved. He lamented, however, that the project was dropped after the martyrdom. In 1845, the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles essentially fulfilled the instructions of D&C 124 by publishing their proclamation to the kings of the world. See Proclamation of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. To all the kings of the world; to the President of the United States of America; to the governors of the several states and to the rulers and peoples of all nations [New York, Prophet Office, 1845].

[5] The "Boarding House" was another name for the Nauvoo House. Begun in October 1841, the building was intended to be a prestigious hotel for the accommodation of prominent public figures. After the Prophet's death, the edifice was left unfinished.