Snow, Erastus Fairbanks. E. Snow’s Reply to the Self-Styled Philanthropist, of Chester County. Philadelphia?: s.n., 1840?
Shall thy lies make men hold their peace and when though mockest shall no man make thee ashamed. Job.
EARLY in the Spring, a pamphlet was published, bearing no other signature than a
“Philanthropist of Chester Co,” said pamphlet was composed of little, or nothing else, than falsehoods, misrepresentations, foul insinuations, wholesale abuse and slander of the doctrines and characters of the Latter Day Saints, reproachfully called Mormons. Dr. S. Bennett of Philadelphia, soon replied to the “Philanthropist,” exposing his falsehoods, and penetrating his sophistry, in a commendable manner; since which, little has been heard from the unknown writer, until late this fall. Dr. Bennett having left the country he has ventured to creep from his hiding place, and set up a hideous hissing no doubt with the intention of redeeming his character from the black catalogue of crimes and falsehoods, with which it is stained. In his answer to Mr. Bennett, which the writer has now before him, instead of sustaining himself in his former position, and defending himself against the attacks of Mr. B., he has had recourse to the same abuse and slander, and has swelled his enormous catalogue of falsehoods to an incredible degree: assertions for proof, and assumptions for arguments, as though his word was Omnipotent, and every body was bound to believe all he said, without knowing who said it, or on what authority it was spoken. Though he was boldly challenged, to cut a quill like a man, and produce his statements, over his signature, and to face in public those whom he so cowardly and meanly caluminiates, he is still ashamed, to come to the light, and publish his name, but is acting behind the serene, howling like the Indian, who cursed the king on the other side of the hill. He truly verifies the language of the prophet Isaiah: “Ye have made a league with hell, and a covenant with death, under falsehoods have ye hid yourself, and made lies your refuge.” The author unaccustomed to write for the press, has reluctantly yielded to the entreaties of many friends, in condescending to thus publicly notice such a low, vulgar and contemptible production; or to bring into question a nameless author, as that of the above named pamphlet: for I remember the advice of Soloman: “answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou be like him.” But being informed that he was a Methodist preacher, by the name of Caleb Jones, a would-be popular man, spreading his infamous pamphlets through the country; I thought of the sequel of the proverb: “Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conciet.” And knowing, as I do, that it is through the priestly, pernicious influence of such men, that we have been mobbed from time to time, and innocent blood has been made to flow, to crimson the face of freedom’s soil. And having myself been a personal sufferer, and having seen such worthless preachers at the head and tail of lawless banditti. — Therefore, viewing this child of darkness, as pursuing the same course, and manifesting the same spirit with his brother preachers in Missouri, I have been induced by these considerations to write the following pages, which it is hoped will subserve the cause of truth, by answering all those traces that appear in the shape of arguments, and exposing some of the most enormous of his falsehoods. Though to notice all his evil insinuations would require a much larger work.
SIR: — In the beginning of your answer to Mr. Bennett, you stated that, in your former pamphlet, the Mormons were not slandered, but if required you could bring respectable witnesses to attest the truth of what you there stated; and it is presumed that you would have the daring effrontery to make a similar assertion concerning your second one. But what do such feigned appearances, and self refuting assertions amount to? Who will back your assertions, if brought to justice? Did you imagine, sir, that the community would believe your ridiculous statements susceptible of proof, when the authorship was kept secret, or are you so used to gulling, that you imagined that you could stuff the public with any thing?
You say “three particular traits in the Mormon character, are slander, imposture, and lying on every occasion” !! Pray, tell us who your majesty is; are you full of eyes so that you can see through all the world, or have you a huge pair of ears, so that you can hear what is said among the Mormons, in all parts of the earth? Perhaps, you are among that class that profess sanctification, and having entered the sanctum sanctorum, you have become Omnipresent.
Again, on page 4th, you say “Mr. Bennett affirms that any one who has the slightest acquaintance with American antiquities or Indian traditions, will find abundant evidences to establish the fact, i.e. of the genuineness of the Golden Plates, or Mormon Bible, and says for confirmation of what he affirms, see Priest’s American Antiquities, and A. Davis, on the discovery of America, by the Northmen.” You try to evade the force of the argument, and puff and blow much about establishing revelation by the opinions of antiquarians; but it is only one of your rectangular twists, and if it does not amount to a falsehood, it is horribly screwing the king’s english, (in which you profess to be so proficient,) to make Mr. B., say that which was foreign to his heart.
Mr. B’s., reference to Antiquarians, was not as you represent; but to establish the fact which you denied, viz., the knowledge of arts and sciences among the Aborigines of the country. The works above referred to, unquestionably prove beyond the power of successful contradiction, the existence of the arts, and sciences, in this country, prior to its discovery by Europeans. But you still in your second pamphlet on page 5th, affirm that “no remains of Antiquity which can be proved to be the work of the inhabitants of this country previous to its discovery, will constitute even so much as the shadow of proof, that the sciences of reading and writing were ever known here.” Here is a specimen of your consummate ignorance of American Antiquities. Mr. Priest relates accounts of writings being found in various parts, remote from European settlements, upon stones, and other substances, inscriptions upon walls, and dilapidated stone buildings; also, inscriptions upon gold plate found in ancient Indian graves. He mentions the finding of writings on parchments, deeply imbedded in the earth. Nearly all the principal papers of this country have of late published the result of the researchers Of Messrs. Stephens and Catherwood, in Central America. On the river Montigua, Monuments and Statues in abundance were found, many of which are covered with writings, and yet you say these are no proofs that the science of writing was ever known here. The system of Logic by which you arrive at your conclusion must be peculiar to yourself. In attempting to show an incongruity between Messrs. Davis and Pratt, you state that Elder D., in a discourse at West Nantmeal Seminary, affirmed that after Professor Anthon, and others of the literati were found insufficient to translate the account engraved upon the plates, Mormon was endued with power to do it; according to which, Mormon must have lived since the discovery of the Golden Plates. “Pratt in his warning voice, says that Mormon was a general in the army of the Nephites about A. D. 450. This you state as knowledge. Hence you say it is necessary for liars to have good memories. Mr. Jones, what has that to do with Mr. Bennett’s reply? Moreover, what induced you to make the above statement? Could not you invent a more ingenious falsehood?”
The quotation you pretend to make use of from Pratt is nothing like accuracy; and if you were present at the delivery of the discourse referred to you certainly must have understood with your elbow; for all who were there that I have asked say that Mr. Davis agreed with Mr. Pratt, and avowed J. Smith Jr., to be the translator of the book, instead of Mormon, as you stated.
After quoting Pratt’s relation to the account given in the Book of Mormon, of the earthquake, the destruction of cities, &c., that was upon this continent at the time of the crucifixion of Christ, and of the darkness that was so dense that fire would not burn, you remark, “every person who knows any thing of philosophy knows that life cannot continue where fire will not burn. This must have been an age of miracles like the present.” Your philosophy sir, is of that sort that the Apostle Paul speaks of; “vain philosophy, and deceit of men, which is after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” Will you make the calculation from your system of philosophy, how much fire Jonah took with him, to last him his three days’ journey in the fish’s belly. Now, Mr. Philanthropist, I will give you a parallel passage from the Bible, which we will match with the one referred to in the Book of Mormon. “And the Lord said unto Moses, stretch out thine hand unto heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt. And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days: they saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days.” Ex. x. 21, 22, 23. I suppose this blunder must be imputed to your ignorance. However, the probability is, that you with others blind like yourself, think that such an account is true when recorded in the Bible; but if in the Book of Mormon it is false. The spectacles you look through magnify both ways, and make it a mole-hill in the Book of Mormon appear like a mountain, and a mountain in the Bible like a mole-hill. You have great volubility, and make a great ado at the idea of the Indians having a knowledge of the arts and sciences one thousand five hundred years ago, and wonder how they leave lost that knowledge, and been reduced to barbarism, and ask “when did they agree to forget themselves, and to destroy their books, schools, furnaces, forges, smiths, carpenters, masons, &c.”? Fudge!! it’s a wonder that great idea did not fracture your cranium! When did the Egyptians, Carthagenians and Greeks, whose statues, pyramids, and relics of architecture still impose in melancholy ruins: When we ask, did they agree to destroy their mechanics, artists, philosophers, &c.? This is the work of ages: and you acknowledge on page 5th, that when the Mexican tribes were visited by the Spanish, even after the lapse of twelve hundred years, arts and sciences were found among them to a considerable extent. The art of printing had not been known, and therefore they like all ancient nations, had not the facilities of perpetuating knowledge that we have.
The following is a specimen of your knowledge of language, that you boast so much about:
“Now, Mr. Bennett, tell us how the Ephraimites acquired a knowledge of the reformed Egyptian language? and why the golden plates were engraved in this language?” Why Mr. Jones, I thought the language was engraved on the plates, instead of the plates in the language. Moreover, if you had ever read the Book of Mormon, you would not have asked those silly questions. (See page 567, sec. edi.)
You most unqualifiedly object to Mr. B’s. statement that, “the Book of Mormon rests upon the same foundation as the Bible, viz: the testimony of men of honesty and veracity:” and you make the following unjustifiable assertion: “The Book of Mormon was got up altogether in the dark; represented indeed as being accompanied by a multitude of miracles, but such as none but Mormons ever saw.”
This in vulgar life would be called a thumper; for it is not only false, but an assertion, the truth of which, you had no possible means of ascertaining. I do not pretend to say that you ever saw a miracle; for I think the Lord would not take notice enough of you to show you one: and were he to do so, it is believed you would be like the Pharisees, who after Jesus had raised Lazarus, sought to kill him again, for fear some would believe in Christ. You further say “the testimony of men however honest they may be, is insufficient to establish a revelation from God: to show to the world its divine origin, it must be accompanies by the achievement of works, public and seen above all human or magical powers; and whoever essays to bring up revelations without such accompaniments, should be regarded as a CRIMINAL impostor; dangerous to the community, and exposed to the punishment of hell fire.” Nearly all your 7th page is occupied in trying to prove (which by the by you will never do), the correctness of the idea you here advance.
Now sir, you are placing yourself in a very awkward position; arraying yourself in direct hostility to nearly all the holy prophets. Point us to the miracles of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and many others who gave revelations to the world. Is it not positively said sir, concerning him, of whom the Saviour said no greater Prophet was ever born of a woman; that he did no miracles? (See John Gos., x. 41.) According to your rule these must all be rejected as criminal impostors, deserving the damnation of hell, and their revelations blotted from the Canon of scripture. You say Moses and Christ wrought miracles; so say I, and what if they did and some believed on them? The Magicians of Egypt wrought the same miracles as Moses, the consequence of which was, the Egyptians would not believe he was inspired, more then their own Magicians. If some then, wrought miracles who gave no revelations to the world, and others gave revelations, who wrought no miracles, the irresistible conclusion follows, that your theory is as false as satan, and of as little substance as your shapeless god. Now Caleb, tell us whether you certainly do believe the Bible or not: If so, on what grounds: is it on the traditions of the fathers? if so the Koran of Mahomed is proven to the Mussulman equally true: Is it on the strength of those miracles you talk about? you have never seen them wrought. Moses and the Prophets wrote the Old Testament, and eight disciples, viz: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, Peter, James and Jude, wrote the whole of the New Testament. To the pen of those men, sir, yes, to the testimony of men only, are you indebted for all you know, either of the doctrines or divine attestations of the scriptures; unless you have received some late revelation; but that cannot be, for on the same page you urge as an objection to any later revelations than the scriptures, the sayings of John in the last of the Apocalypse: “If any man (not God) shall add to these things, God shall add to him the plagues that are written in this book.”
Here you exultingly brand the Mormons with incurring this curse, for introducing (as you say) the book of Mormon as an addition to the Bible. Here is manifested the true spirit of your father that characterizes all your writing; an evident design on your part, to stuff the ignorant with what you do not believe yourself.
You do know, unless you are willfully ignorant, that the words “this book,” in the text, has no more reference to the Bible than it has to the statutes of the United States. You cannot be so ignorant of the history of the Bible, as to imagine that it was compiled in its present form; or that John had it with him on the isle of Patmos, when he wrote his revelations. (See Watson on the History of the Bible.) John could have meant nothing more, than men’s altering the revelations he was then writing, for historians tell us that he wrote his Gospel, and some say his Epistles, after he wrote his revelation; but if you reject all of a later date, on the ground you here occupy, you must for the same reason reject all that have been given since Moses; for he has the same injunction, (see Deut. iv. 2). On page 8th, as also on pages 22 and 23, this self-styled philanthropist has given us some specimens of his poetic genius; which I shall pass by with silent contempt. The bare recital of them must offend the delicate ear and bring a blush upon the check of chastity; and surely his readers will say with me, that none but an abandoned libertine would spread such vulgarisms before the public. The licentious spirit which they breathe, but too plainly indicates the corruption of the heart from which they emanated; for “of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.”
The next gun he fires is at the Mormons’ corporeal God of flesh and bones, and he labors very hard and succeeds well in proving that God is a spirit: but pray Mr. P., whoever said that he was not a spirit? What Mormon, understanding our doctrines, ever said that God the Father had flesh and bones? It is truly diverting to see you make so much noise, in trying to destroy a building of your own make, and shooting so much at a mark you have set up yourself: but if you had ever read our books it would have saved you all that labor. (See Book of Doctrines, page 53.) “The father is a personage of spirit, glory and power, possessing all perfection and fulness.
The Son is a personage of tabernacle made or fashioned like unto man; or in other words man was made in his image. He is also the express image of the personage of the Father, possessing the same fulness with the Father; reigning in the same kingdom, sitting at the right hand of power, a mediator for man.”
Your long bombast about the God of flesh and bones, reminds me very much of my father’s old buck making a furious attack upon an old hat, which he supposed contained a man’s head. Does it necessarily follow that because God is a spirit, possessing universal knowledge, that spirit has no form, shape, or bodily appearance as you would have it? vice versa: Does it necessarily follow that because, as we affirm, he has a form and bodily parts, that form is composed of flesh and bones? Does not Paul say there is a natural body, and also a spiritual body? According to your logic, because your shadow resembles your body, it must be the body itself; or will you deny the existence of spirit altogether? That God has a form is evident from Phil. ii. 6; speaking of Jesus “who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God.”
Indeed, sir, I think it would puzzle a Sir Isaac Newton, to tell what you really do believe about the God-head; and it is doubted whether you know yourself: if you do you have an odd way of showing it; for here you assert that “he is separate from all matter, having neither body nor bodily parts,” and in your discipline, (Sect. 2, Art. 1, on the Godhead,) we are told that in unity of this Godhead, there are Three persons of one Substance. In the next article it is stated, that Christ is one substance with the Father, very God and very man; was crucified dead and buried: that he truly did rise again from the dead; took upon himself his body with all things appertaining to the perfections of man’s nature, wherewith he ascended to heaven. Now sir, let the impartial reader compare this description of the Godhead, with the one in our book of doctrines, and decide whether you Methodists, or the Mormons are Idolators worshiping a corporeal God. Ours says that the Father is a personage of spirit, and the Son a personage of tabernacle, yours says they are both of one substance, and that is the body that was crucified, buried and raised: and again, you say without body or parts: O Tempora!!! O Mores!!!! Here we want scores of interjections, and battalions of exclamation points. A man who can swallow such ridiculous absurdities as the foregoing, and yet sneer as much as you have about Moses and the elders of Israel seeing God, must be of the breed of the Pharisees, who strained at a gnat and swallowed a camel.
To prove that God is not a being that can be seen, you refer to Exodus xxxiii, 20. “And he said thou canst not see my face, for there shall no man see me and live.” Why did you stop there Mr. Jones? Why did you not read the following verse? “And I will cover thee with my hand while I pass by, and I will take away my hand and thou shalt see my back parts.” But that could not be your God, for you say he has no parts. That there should be such apparent discrepances in the Bible is no marvel, when we consider the lapse of ages since it was written, the revolution in language, the many times it was translated and transcribed while yet in manuscripts, by uninspired men, always liable to mistakes: but when such discrepances do appear, they should be decided on that side which has the majority of evidence. Jacob says (Genesis xxxiii, 30.) “I have seen God face to face and my life is preserved:” and nearly all from Abraham to John testify of seeing him. (See Exodus xxiv. 9, 12.) O sir, “Quit for shame such sorry prattling. ” You say on page 10th, that “the Mormons represent Jesus Christ as being a sinner, saved be regeneration: that they hypocritically profess belief in the scriptures, but deny the existence of Jesus, from eternity: that they are worse than confessed infidels, such as Volney, Voltaire and Paine, and for such there is no hope.” Now sir, we tell you as Jesus told the Pharisees, “ye are of your father the devil, who was a liar from the beginning: and his works ye will do;” for you have attended our meetings enough to know, that what you assert is false. Neither you nor any other man ever heard such doctrine taught, by the elders of this church. Our book of doctrines says, that all things were created by him; he was in the bosom of the Father from the beginning, and was as a lamb slain before the foundation of the world. (See page 57.) To back your statements you say, “I received some times since, letters from Mormons wherein all the ability they were master of, was exerted to prove that Jesus Christ was a man only; ” but you do not tell who those Mormons are. Now sir, I deny the fact and challenge you to produce letters to that effect. I have been informed that the letters to which you refer, were written by one of your young school boys who was not a Mormon, whom your honor had the shocking boldness to encounter in a religious dispute.
Mr. Bennett says it was not until after Christ was baptised and received the Holy Ghost, that the Father said, thou art my beloved Son, &c. (See Mark i. 9-12.) From this you infer that we deny his pre-existence, but it was not with that view that Mr. B. made the statement: Christ’s baptism being an example for us, it was to show us that it was not until after we had been born of water and the spirit, that we should be entitled to the appellation of sons of God. In your remarks upon Ezekiel’s vision of the dry bones, you misrepresent us again; you say we take it exactly according to the letter. It is the interpretation, sir, that God gave of the vision which we take literally, and not the vision itself. (See Ezek. xxxvii. 11-15.) “These bones are the whole house of Israel.” “Behold I will open your graves and bring you up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel.” To this declaration of the Almighty you have serious objections, but you must settle the matter with him, for he was the author of it and not the Mormons. You make the same silly blunder about Ezekiel’s two sticks; (from verse 16 to 20 of the same chapter), instead of the sticks on which he wrote, being the two records themselves, they were but a representation of them; for when the people should say “what meanest thou by these,” say unto them, thus sayeth the Lord; behold I will take the stick of Joseph which is in the hand of Ephraim, (not Ezekiel) and put it with the stick of Judah, &c.
Again you say “the Mormons teach entire dependence on private revelation, and consequently make wholly void the scriptures,” and after Mr. B. had contradicted that statement, you have the audacity to affirm in your answer, that you can prove it.” Now, Mr. Philanthropist, when the lie was on your shoulders, why did you not adduce your evidence and shake it off, instead of saying “I can prove it;” your not attempting it, betrays your lurking conviction of its untruth.
The fact is you have run against the Mormons in the course of your travels, and got so dreadfully shattered, that you have scarcely been able to speak the truth since. Again, you say that we insist upon the doctrine of a third covenant, from which you infer that we reject the Gospel covenant, and preach a new Gospel, another covenant, Priesthood and Saviour, and exultingly denounce the curse of Paul upon those who preach another Gospel. Again, on page 14, by the way of ridicule, you enumerate the principles and ordinances of the doctrine we preach, viz: - faith, repentance, baptism, laying on of hands, sacrament, the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment. If that is preaching another Gospel, then we inherit the curse of Paul. But as for the third covenant you talk about, I know of none; but I testify that God has set his hand in these last days to renew and establish with Israel, that same everlasting covenant that the Gentiles anciently received, which they have broken, (see Isa. xxix., 5.) To show that that covenant is to be established with Israel, after the fulness of the Gentiles are come in, (see Rom. xi. 25-28.) On page 13 you insinuate that we believe the kingdom of God was lost from the earth, about A.D. 450; and that since that time till now God has enlightened and saved none. We do not set any precise time when it was lost, or when the covenant was broken, but I believe the apostacy of the church from the Apostolic order was a gradual decline; and as for those who have lived since, we believe they will be judged according to the light they have had. If they lived according to the best light they had it will be well with them, and they shall rise up in judgment against this generation for rejecting a greater light. Again, under the head of Mormon blasphemies and absurdities, it is stated they have manufactured a new, unknown God and Saviour, a counterfeit revelation, a new covenant, gospel, apostles, evangelists, &c.
We doubt not, sir, that God and Christ are both new and unknown to you, and consequently his revelations, Gospel and all its appendages are also, for “you worship ye know now what; we know what we worship;” but we neither love, fear nor serve your shapeless God; and if, as you say, he has been blasphemed, let him speak and plead his own cause; but that he cannot do for he has no mouth. Again, you say, “the principles of the doctrine about which the Mormons make so much noise, are as different from those contained in scripture, as hell is from heaven, which I will now show;” and the way you show it is a caution to old folks.
If assertions of your own, epithets, curses and invective denunciations, would accomplish your purpose, you have certainly done it. I must confess your mode of demonstration goes ahead of all logicians ever heard of. And after all your writing and twisting to get out from under it, you do know that Paul enumerates those very principles in the 6th chapter of Hebrews. It is now plainly manifest, after all you have said about the Mormons being infidels, that you are completely weighed in the balance and found wanting. You are driven to the necessity of pronouncing those, which Paul calls the principles of the Gospel, as repugnant to it as hell is to heaven. You say that faith which precedes repentance is that of devils. What if it is the faith of devils? it follows that the devils are nearer right than you are.
Who with five grains of common sense, does not know that a man cannot repent of his sins until he believes he has sins to repent of? and as sin is the transgression of the law: how can he be made sensible he is a sinner, until he first believes that there is a God, who has given a law and commandments which he has disobeyed? You take exceptions to the idea of obtaining remission of sins through obedience to the ordinance of baptism, and say “the Apostles never professed to forgive sins by baptising.” In the 20th chap., 23d verse of John’s Gos., Jesus said unto them, “whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted, and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained,” i.e. whose soever sins ye do not remit, they shall not be remitted; from which the propricty of Peter’s injunction is obvious, (Acts ii. Chap. 38;) “reprent and be baptised, every one of you for the remission of sins.” That a Methodist priest should object to Peter’s mode, is not at all surprising to me, since they essay to get their dupes’ sins remitted, by getting them round a bench and bawling over them: but if the Apostles ever had any such method of forgiving sins, you have not been so kind as to inform us. To prove that baptism is not essential, the case of Cornelius and his household (Acts, 10 chap.) is produced: but that is a sorry one for you, for after they had received the spirit, Peter commanded them to be baptised; to be sure they received the spirit prior to baptism; but that is the only instance known in the scripture, and it was altogether gratuitous and not by promise; the evident design of which was to convince the Apostles that the Gospel was for the Gentiles as well as for the Jews.
You cite the reader to a number of passages in Paul’s writings, speaking of the deadness of the Mosaic law, and the necessity of living by faith, but what they have to do with the subject I am at a loss to determine.
You admit that the Apostles used to pray, and lay hand on those whom they baptised, for the reception of the Holy Ghost; but you say “it will never be given by the imposition of the most unholy hands of imposters.” Very true, that is the test, and a deep sensibility of it is doubtless the reason that you and your brother preachers omit that ordinance. Again, you insinuate that we believe the Gospel will be preached in hell after the judgment; but that is a vain hypothesis of your own. No such idea was advanced, either by Mr. B. or any other Mormon. We believe what Peter said, (1st Pet. 3, 19) that Christ went and preached to the spirits in prison. Moreover, we believe that the Gospel will be preached to the spirits of those who never hear it in this life, but that will be between death and the resurrection.
“The Mormon resurrection is in carnality, begetting children, multiplying, &c.” This, sir, you stated in your first pamphlet; Mr. B. positively contradicted it, but you again come forth with the same lie, though you say the Mormons have contradicted it time and again, and you seem determined to willfully and maliciously slander and traduce the latter-day saints all that lays in your power; you not only love lies after they are made, and give them all the circulation you can, but you have racked your very brain in inventing new ones; and when you have been told time and again, that we do not believe things you attribute to us; you are still determined to publish your contemptible falsehoods, and circulate them where we cannot correct the public mind: and because you love and make lies, you are (in Rev. xxii.15,) justly ranked with adulterers, whoremongers, and idolators; and we doubt not, that such a resurrection that you describe would be very gratifying to yourself, but be it known to you that we do not belong to your filthy clan.
On page 21 you say “it remains that from their hymns, construction of scripture, professions of belief, and public report, the Mormons certainly do teach propagation, and therefore procreation after the resurrection, and as it cannot be in a married state, it must be by fornication; I would further remark that when this abominable vice is supposed to be sanctioned in a state of imaginary purity, it must be considered as a virtue, in a less perfect state.” It, is evidently your intention to create the impression that we are fornicators and believe that the system will be carried out in eternity; and you refer to some passages, which you say we take as proof of procreation in the resurrected saints.
Now, sir, it is an unpardonable error in you, or a wilful misrepresentation, for you must know better. We have quoted scripture to prove 1st. that the saints who have died in Christ will at his coming be raised in immortality, to reign with him on earth a thousand years. 2nd. That at his coming the wicked will be destroyed off the earth, and satan will be bound. 3d. That the saints who are still alive on earth at the time of Christ’s coming, (who have not been raised from the dead, because they have not died,) will continue to multiply and replenish the earth; to build houses and inhabit them, to plant vineyards and eat the fruit of them; they and their children, and their children’s children, through the millennium or 1,000 years reign. This last idea, those passages prove to which you refer, (see also Isaiah 65, commencing with the 21st verse.) 4th. That the army of Gog and and Magog, spoken of Rev. 20th, will comprise as many of the before mentioned children as satan shall succeed in deceiving when he is loosed a little season.
Mr. B. says “because those saints who are alive at the coming of the Lord, will not be so far changed, as that the relation of husband and wife, parent and child will be annihilated; therefore, you would feign create the impression that we teach procreation in the resurrected saints.” From this charge of Mr. B’s. you try to screen yourself, by saying, “Who is it that cannot see, if the relation of parent, child, &c., are taught as continuing after the resurrection, that procreation must also be inculcated, as continuing subsequent to it.” Here is a specimen of that sophistry that is manifested in all your writings. Does Mr. B. say anything about those relations existing between the resurrected saints? Moreover, you affirm, “one of their elders said that Gog and Magog is to be made up of children of those who have been raised from the dead.” Now, sir, why did you not give the name of that elder, the time and place he said it, and who heard it?
Indeed this is the trick you have played all through this rhapsody; “the Mormons say” “one of their elders said,” “I heard that Smith said,” “I was credibly informed,” “you or your Mormon brethren have said;” and when all is summed up it amounts to this, Tom heard Dick say, that Henry told Jack that Jim said, it was currently reported that the Mormons believed so; and all your high sounding words and loud denunciations, on the strength of such testimony, reminds us of the anecdote of the toad, that tried to swell as large as the ox.
You again show your extensive mind in your remarks about the Priesthood; Mr. Bennett says that the latter-day saints have the true authority restored, to wit: the Melchizedeck Priesthood. Concerning this you remark that Melchizedeck was a type of Christ. That there was but another Priesthood to be established, and consequently but another Priest to arise, “and that was Christ;” and you refer to Heb. Vii. Mr. Philanthropist if you will read that over again, you may learn that instead of Christ having another Priesthood, he has the same one that Melchizedeck had; but does that chapter say that Christ is the only one who shall have that Priesthood? You seem to infer it, but pray tell us what Priesthood Jethro, Moses’s father-in-law had, (see Ex.iii. and also xviii,) from which it will be seen that he has a Priesthood acknowledged of God more than forty years before the Aaronical Priesthood was known in Scripture, Also what Holy Priesthood was in the church after Christ, (spoken of 1st Pet,ii.5-9.) It evidently was the Priesthood after the order of Melchizedeck, as that is the only one God ever acknowledged, except the Priesthood of Aaron that officiated under the law of Moses.
Again, “Christ was to be a Priest forever, consequently the Mormon doctrine that this Priesthood ceased about A.D. 450, is a blasphemous imposture.”
Now, sir, that doctrine exists no where but in your disordered imagination: The Latter-day Saints have never taught that it ceased to exist; but that God took it from among men because of disobedience.
Again you say "as his priesthood is perpetual; Christ and not Smith, is still the Priest and Mediator. Pray Mr. Jones, who said he was not; but does not the same chapter say that Melchizedeck abideth a Priest forever? and do not the scriptures repeatedly say the Saints shall be made Priests to God and shall reign with him forever? so we see that those who receive and magnify the office of the Melchizedeck priesthood, in time, hold it also in eternity. But you carry the idea that but one must necessarily be deprived of it himself.
You say Mr. Smith professes to be a son of God; and therefore you brand him with the appellation of false Christ; but who do you profess to be? A son of Beelzebub I suppose, or else a false Christ; for “to every one who believed on his name gave he power to become the sons of God,” (See John Gos. i. 12.
“The revelation to Smith, Pratt and Rigdon, while in jail, is a specimen of their prophetic art, the purport of which was, that they should apply to the judge of the court, and if he would do nothing for them, then to the governor, and if he would not favor them, then to the President, and if he would do nothing for them, then they were to take care of themselves.” The revelation, sir, from which you pretend to quote was given in 1833, to the Saints who were driven from Jackson Co., Mo., and even that is no more like your quotation then you are like a Philanthropist. It says, that if the authorities of the land refuse to redress their wrongs, “the Lord will in due time come forth from his hiding place and vex the nation,” and you will remember it too, sir, when you are overtaken with the scourge of the Almighty. You will not then think that “every old woman can make as good a revelation.” “They have not produced any signs superior to those of Magic or witchcraft.” If you are seeking for signs you are not without company, for your father sought them of Jesus when he tempted him in the wilderness: “As your fathers did so do ye,” but Jesus said, “get thee behind me Satan.” Moreover, there are hundreds in Chester Co., in Philadelphia, and the country about, who can, and will testify that they have seen the sick healed by the prayer of faith, and laying on of hands – your assertions to the contrary notwithstanding. The Apostle James v. 14, says “if any are sick let them call for the elders to pray for, and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith shall save the sick.” This practice you ridicule very much as you do also the promise of Christ: “These signs shall follow them that believe,” &c., Mark xvi. 17-18, but for the best of reasons you make no attempt at a refutation. This is the way with all your fraternity: when a formidable front is presented, that is impregnable to all your assaults, you try to surmount it by ridicule, and trample with impunity upon the plainest sayings of scripture; but after all you have said, or can say, the promise of Christ remains sure to the believer, and notwithstanding your high profession you prove yourself to be of that class that have a form of Godliness, but deny the power thereof.
You say when the Mormons lay hands upon the sick, and they are not healed, it is attributed to a want of faith in the patient. Well, what objecting have you to that, is it not said of Christ, that he could do no mighty work in his own country because of their unbelief? (see Mark vi, 5.)
You say you “doubt not that the Mormons have many dreams, and visions of their own hearts, and revelations from the Devil: they prophecy and speak with tongues like gypsies; but it is all gibberish and jargon.” In this you truly verify the scriptures. Paul says 1st Cor. xiv. 23, when the Saints come together and speak with tongues; unbelievers will say they are mad; and so it was when the Apostles spoke with tongues; the Jews mocked as you do, and said they were drunk. As for dreams, visions, prophecies, &c,; God said by the mouth of Joel, that in the last days he would pour out his spirit upon all flesh; then they should see visions, dream dreams, prophecy, &c.; (see Joel ii, 28,) but as you do not believe it, you have no lot nor part in the matter; and it is evident that you do not know as much about the religion of Heaven and are not acceptable to God as Balam’s Ass; for he actually did have a vision of Angels.
“The Mormons presume in connexion with all their other absurdities that they shall be made equal to Christ: this is a grade of delusion which not but devils could cause.” Well, we will examine and see whether the devil or God is the author of it. Jesus says “be ye perfect as your father who is in Heaven is perfect.” Matt. v. 48. perfection reaches beyond improvement. Again the Saints shall become one in God, as the Father and Son are one in each other. John xvii. 21.
“He that believeth on me the works that I do shall he do also.” (John xiv. 12,) “to him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me on my throne; even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father on his throne.” Rev. iii, 21. Paul says “if we are children of God then heirs; heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. ” Rom. viii. 17. Again, “that ye might be filled with all the FULNESS of God.” Eph. iii, 19, also iv, 13, “till we all come in the unity of the faith, unto a perfect man, and to the FULNESS of Christ.” And to crown the climax he says, Phil. ii, 5-6 “let this same mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus; who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be EQUAL with God.” O! what a pity it is that Paul and Jesus, could not have been under the tuition of the Chester Co. Philanthropist, so as to have escaped this grade of delusion which none but devils could cause; but now their doom is fixed with the poor Mormons.
The following is another specimen of his mode of demonstration.
“One of the Mormon members lately had a revelation of hell, and fully ascertained that there was no fire there. I shortly after received a letter from one of their advocates, in which he affirmed that there was neither heat nor fire in hell, and that all the hell there is, is in one’s own breast.” Concerning this, we say, it is entirely new to us, and you appear not to know yourself who or where that member is; if you do, you have not informed us.
Further we would ask why did you make use of the term, “one of their advocates”? Was it your intention to deceive, and make the impression that he was one of our society? If he is a member why did you not say so, and give his name, that we might correct his mind: or were you afraid of being confronted in your statements? Moreover, if you were desirous of representing our doctrines correctly, why did you not quote from our books? Book of doct. page 227, reads as follows; “these are they who shall go away into the lake of fire and brimstone, with the devil and his Angels.” Again, “they shall go away into everlasting punishment, where their worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched, which is their torment.” Now sir, one thing I am sure of, is there is one place in hell hotter than another, it is had in reserve for those men, who under a garb of sanctity, misrepresent every thing they touch, and villify, and traduce, an inoffensive people, who have never injured a hair of their heads. “Woe unto thee that spoilest and thou wast not spoiled, and dealest treacherously, when they dealt not treacherously with thee: when thou shalt cease to spoil thou shalt be spoiled; and when thou shalt cease to deal treacherously, they shall deal treacherously with thee. – Isaiah.
We warn you in the name of Jesus Christ to repent of your sins, of your lying, your priestcraft, and all your abominations, and humble yourself before God, and be baptised in his name for the remissions of sins, by those whom God has commissioned, or you will be damned.
To look over this commingled mass of putrid matter, and notice the skipping, and the dodging from one thing toanother, and the way subjects are touched upon in one part, and finished in another; one would conclude that the writer’s brain was very much shattered, or else a number of brainless chaps were engaged in the business, and brought their several products together. But be that as it may, the return to the resurrection, the one thousand years reign of Christ on earth; the army of Gog and Magog, and the long harrangue on those subjects, is but another exhibition of astonishing stupidity: and the way the writer writhes and twists under the 20th chapter of Rev. is truly diverting.
After making many assertions and analogizing from them, he finally arrives at the conclusion, that the Mormons believe the army of Gog and Magog will suffer the second death, and that they will be the saints who are raised from the dead. He then proves from scripture, that those who have part in the first resurrection shall not suffer the second death. Astonishing! What ingenuity! I might conclude the Moon was made of green cheese, and then prove it false.
But Mr. J. you have told us in this same work that the Mormons teach procreation in the resurrected saints, and that their children will compose that army. Why that’s not good policy, the people will take you for a downright botcher, if you tell two contradictory lies on the same pages; and if they once get that into their heads, you will not make $80 on this pamphlet as easy as you did on your first one.
Again, you say “the first resurrection, that of the righteous is at the end of the 1000 years; "that the 1000 years reign mentioned, is a reign of spirits prior to the resurrection of the bodies, but not on earth.” But does the scripture say so? look and see; “and hast made us unto our God, kings, and priests, and we shall reign on the EARTH, (Rev. v. 10.) This was spoken by saints whom John saw in heaven. Zechariah says, xiv. chap., that the Lord shall come with all his saints; then he shall be king over all the EARTH. John after speaking of the saints who shall be raised to reign with Christ, says that the rest of the dead shall not be raised till after the 1000 years. The word rest, implies that some will be raised before and some other. But you seem much elated with an imaginary triumph, when you bring up Christ’s words, “the hour is coming when all that are in their graves shall come forth;” this you think proves that all, both righteous and wicked will rise in the same hour; but Mat. xxvii. 52. 53, tells us that at Christ’s resurrection, many bodies of the saints came out of their graves. This alone takes your silly hypothesis from you, for if many who were then in their graves, could rise when Christ rose, why not many more when he comes to reign.
After Mr. Bennett has proven your statements false about the two New Jerusalems, you now come out with your usual bombast, and try to turn the lie back on Mr. B. To prove it you bring up one of our hymns, and a quotation from Pratt’s Voice of Warning. The hymn says not a word about Jerusalem, New or Old. Pratt mentions but one New Jerusalem, and uses the same words about Old Jerusalem, that Mr. B. does, and why you make those quotations, I am wholly at a loss to determine, unless your senses were so completely stupefied that you could think of nothing else to say. You say the Mormons pretend not to preach for money, but when they are to go any distance they take good care to procure before they start a collection to bear their expenses. What objections do you have to that? Christ says, “the workmen is worthy of his meat.” Would you have a poor man work for nothing and board himself. The reader will imagine that this comes with a very ill grace from a Methodist preacher, if he examines the monied plans in their discipline; the weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly collections; collections at class meetings; collections at conference; collections at camp-meetings. Indeed, it is money! money! money! Money when they lie down, and money when they rise up. Moreover, this same chap, before publishing his second pamphlet went through the country raising money by subscription where he could find any body silly enough to give, so as to make a handsome profit before he would commence it, and doubtless that was the prime instigator of the production, for it contains nearly all that was in his first one; that Mr. B. proved to be false, and which he must have known to be such in the first place. One thing more I shall notice, which I should have deemed unworthy of an answer, were it not that many religious editors in this city, had of late given publicity to the same falsehood, viz: - that Joseph Smith seduced and stole away the daughter of Isaac Hale, of Susquehanna Co., Pa. Justice to an intimate friend requires that the facts should be stated, as I had them from Mrs. Smith’s own mouth, (formerly Emma Hale.) She had property of her own, was about twenty-two years of age, and consequently at liberty to act for herself. When after they had courted and promised to marry, her father’s assent was refused for no other reason than Mr. Smith’s religion; the rest of the family being willing they were married when he was absent on a journey. And those clerical gentlemen who are so conscientious, and make a great ado because he fulfilled his marriage contract, are just the men that make the devil laugh.
Now Mr. Philanthropist, wherever you are or whatever is your name or occupation – in conclusion, we dare you to show yourself at any time and place that will suit your own convenience, and submit your system of religion with that of the Latter-Day Saints to a close investigation, the Scriptures being the test; and no longer play the part of a Spaniel dog, who, when he is afraid to face his enemy will turn his hinder parts and bark. But if you are still determined to continue barking at a distance, we would recommend you to apply to some country girl for a few lessons on Logic : also secure the assistance of a few more of your fraternity and get your friend Mr. Myers to inspect your work, and try if possible to produce something new – for the public will get tired of those old tales that you have harped upon till they are worn out. Try also to cultivate your memory so that you will not forget what you have said, and contradict yourself before you get through. As Mormonism seems to operate as an emetic upon you, it is highly probable that if you have not emited all the filthiness there was in you, it will soon operate again. Should this be the case my sincere desire is, that it may be before I leave the country, that it may not come belching after me when I am gone as it was in the case of Mr. Bennett. Yours, &c.
A man w h o c a n s w a l l o w such ridiculous absurdities as the foregoing, and yet sneer as much as you have about M o s e s and the elders o f Israel seeing G o d , must be of the breed o f the Pharisees, w h o strained at a gnat and swallowed a camel.
T o p r o v e that G o d is not a being that can be seen, y o u refer to E x o d u s x x x i i i , 2 0 . " A n d he said thou canst not sec m y face, for there shall n o man see me and live." W h y did y o u stop there M r . Jones ?
W h y did y o u not read the following verse? " A n d I will c o v e r thee with m y hand while I pass b y , and I will take a w a y m y hand and thou shalt see my back parts." But that could not be y o u r G o d , for y o u say he has no parts. T h a t there should be such apparent d i s c r e p a n c e s in the Bible is n o marvel, w h e n w e consider the lapse o f ages since it was written, the revolution in language, the m a n y times it was transla’.ed and transcribed while yet in manuscripts, b y uninspired men, a l w a y s liable to mistakes : but when such discrepances clo appear, they should be decided on that side w h i c h has the majority o f e v i d e n c e Jacob says (Genesis x x x i i , 3 0 . ) " 1 have seen G o d face to face and nry life is p r e s e r v e d : " and nearly all from A b r a h a m to John testify of seeing him. ( S e e E x o d u s x x i v . 9, 1 2 . ) 0 sir, " Quit for shame such sorry prattling.’’’’ Y o u s a y o n p a g e 10th, that " t h e M o r m o n s represent Jesus Christ as being a sinner, saved b y regeneration: that they hypocritically profess belief in the scriptures, but d e n y the existence o f Jesus, from eternity : that they are w o r s e than confessed infidels, such as V o l n e y , Voltaire and Paine, and for such there is no h o p e . " N o w sir, we tell y o u as Jesus told the Pharisees, " y e are o f y o u r father the devil, w h o was a liar from the b e g i n n i n g : and his w o r k s y e will d o ; " for y o u have attended our meetings enough to k n o w , that what y o u assert is false.
Neither y o u nor a n y other man ever heard such doctrine taught, b y the elders o f this c h u r c h . Our b o o k o f doctrines s a y s , that all things w e r e created b y him ; he was in the b o s o m o f the Father from the beginning, and was as a himb slain from before the foundation o f the w o r l d . ( S e e p a g e 5 7 . ) T o back y o u r statements y o u s a y , " I received s o m e time since, letters from M o r m o n s wherein all the ability they w e r e master of, was exerted to prove that Jesus Christ was a man only / " but y o u do not tell w h o those M o r m o n s are. N o w sir, 1 d e n y the fact, and challenge y o u to produce letters to that effect.
I have been informed that the letters to which y o u refer, w e r e written b y o n e o f y o u r y o u n g school b o y s w h o was not a M o r m o n , w h o m y o u r honor had the shocking boldness to encounter in a religious dispute.
M r . Bennett s a y s it was not until after Christ was baptised and received the H o l y Ghost, that the Father said, thou art m y beloved S o n , & c . ( S e e Mark i. 9-—12.) F r o m this y o u infer that we d e n y his pre-existence, but it was not with that view that M r . B . made the s t a t e m e n t : Christ’s baptism being an example for us, it w a s to s h o w us that it was not until after w e had been born o f water and the spirit, that w e should be entitled to the appellation o f sons o f G o d . In y o u r remarks upon Ezekiel’s vision o f the d r y b o n e s , y o u misrepresent us