41: “I Will Order All Things for Your Good” (Doctrine and Covenants 111–114)
Of all the relationships we have over a lifetime, there is only one we carry with us wherever we go: Our relationship with God and Jesus Christ. As we better understand who They are, we will also more clearly see ourselves and our place in the world. This knowledge was crucial for early members as they faced, “one of the severest trials for many of the Ohio Saints.” It is equally important for us today to know God and the Savior as we face severe trials. So grab your scriptures, and let’s dig into Doctrine and Covenants 111–114.
Section 111 Title:
“Mission to Salem, Massachusetts—Follies”
“Between 1833 and 1836, Joseph Smith and the Church had been grappling with an increasingly serious plague of debts. Many factors had contributed to this burden. The loss of all Church assets in Jackson County, Missouri, estimated at $175,000, had forced the reorganization of the united order in Kirtland.1
“At this time of financial pressures, a report reached Joseph Smith of a member of the Church named Jonathan Burgess, recently arrived in Kirtland, who knew the location of "a large amount of money" buried in a house in Salem, Massachusetts.6 Very few details of Burgess's story are known, but Joseph clearly investigated his claim and found it to be credible. Ebenezer Robinson later reported: "A brother in the church by the name of Burgess, had come to Kirtland and stated that a large amount of money had been secreted in the cellar of a certain house in Salem, Massachusetts, which had belonged to a widow, and he thought he was the only person now living who had knowledge of it, or to the location of the house. We saw the brother Burgess, but Don Carlos Smith told us with regard to the hidden treasure. His statement was credited by the brethren, and steps were taken to try and secure the treasure."7
“The Prophet left Kirtland on 25 July 1836 with his brother Hyrum, Sidney Rigdon, and Oliver Cowdery. They traveled first to New York City, where they spent several days with the Church's creditors, and then continued on to Salem, Massachusetts, arriving on 4 August.8 There they met with Brother Burgess who, unfortunately, was not able to verify his earlier claims or even to locate the right house, and he soon left the Prophet and his companions” (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 4, "Doctrine and Covenants 111," Deseret Book).
Doctrine and Covenants 111:1
Folly: Weakness of intellect; imbecility of mind. want of understanding. Conduct contrary to the laws of God or man (See Webster’s 1828 Dictionary).
Hebrew: Discover your secrete parts is an idiom for being thoroughly and publicly humiliated.
“When will man cease to war with man, and wrest [or take] from him his sacred rights of worshiping his God according as his conscience dictates?” (Joseph Smith, History of the Church, 2:465).
“Upon his return from a brief mission in Salem, Massachusetts, and a visit to the Church's creditors in New York,1 Joseph Smith had pursued his idea of forming a Church-owned bank in Kirtland.
“This company operated in all but name as a bank.2 Unfortunately, the organized opposition of non-Mormon interests in Ohio, vexatious lawsuits, possible embezzlement by tellers or cashiers, a nationwide banking panic in May 1837, and a lack of banking experience soon made it apparent that the Kirtland Safety Society was going to fail.3 When the company did fail the following summer, Joseph Smith was among its biggest, if not the biggest, of the financial losers. By that time, he had severed his own connections with the company and had publicly warned Church members of the dangers of investing in it any further.4 Eventually, as many as two hundred individuals lost all or nearly all of their investments. All too frequently as members lost their money, they also lost their testimonies. With the failure of the Kirtland Safety Society and other problems, ‘at least two hundred to three hundred persons apostatized, representing a loss of 10 to 15 percent of the Kirtland membership. About one-third of the Church leaders were either excommunicated, disfellowshipped, or removed from their Church callings,’ although as many as half later returned to the Church.5 Thus, the year 1837 represented the first massive wave of apostasy from the restored gospel in the latter days” (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 4, "Doctrine and Covenants 112," Deseret Book).
Scriptures in this segment:
Doctrine and Covenants 111:11
Wise as Serpents: “The serpent is a very sharp sighted, cunning creature, and uses various arts and stratagems for its own preservation, and especially of its head; and is so far to be imitated by the followers of Christ, as to make use of all proper methods to preserve themselves from the insults and rage of men, and not expose themselves to unnecessary dangers: and, as much as in them lies, they should be careful to give no just occasion of offence, or irritate, and provoke them to use them ill, and to avoid all snares and traps that are laid for them” (Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible, “Matthew 10:16,” biblehub.com).
Section 112 Title: “Thomas B Marsh: Lord’s Instruction to a Quorum President”
“When President Marsh arrived in Kirtland in July, he was distraught to learn that two of his quorum had already been sent to Europe by the First Presidency without his approval. Apparently, Marsh believed that only he, as quorum president, had authority to call the Twelve on foreign missions. On 23 July 1837, Joseph Smith received Doctrine and Covenants 112, a revelation for Thomas Marsh, giving him information concerning the future of his quorum and also the relationship between his quorum and the First Presidency, especially with respect to foreign missions. Elder Marsh himself acted as scribe when this revelation was received.9 It is interesting to note that on the same day this revelation was received, Elder Heber C. Kimball preached the first sermon of this dispensation outside the United States and Canada in Preston, England.10 (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 4, "Doctrine and Covenants 112," Deseret Book).
Section 113 Title: “Insights into the Book of Isaiah”
“The question-and-answer format of this revelation is similar to that of Doctrine and Covenants 77, with which Doctrine and Covenants 113 shares other similarities, including the use of "figurative expressions" (D&C 77:2) common to apocalyptic imagery.10 As in Doctrine and Covenants 77, the questioner in Doctrine and Covenants 113:1–6 is unidentified, but since the answers are recorded as revelation to the Prophet Joseph, he probably posed the questions to the Lord in both sections. It may be recalled that Isaiah 11 was part of the angel Moroni's first message to the young Joseph Smith (Joseph Smith–History 1:40), and it is therefore understandable that this chapter and its meaning would continue to be of special interest to the Prophet” (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 4, "Doctrine and Covenants 113," Deseret Book).
Jesse: The father of King David and ancestor to Christ and all the kings of Judah.
Stem: The Hebrew word for stem in Isaiah 11:1 is stump—either a tree that has been cut down or a tree that has been planted. It also represents Christ.
Rod: Represents Joseph Smith.
Branch: Represents Christ and life out of death.
Roots: Also represents Joseph Smith.
Ensign: Any signal to assemble or give notice.
Section 114 Title: “David W. Patten—Man of Faith”
“Six months after Doctrine and Covenants 114 was received, David W. Patten was killed in what has become known as the battle of Crooked River. On 25 October 1838, Elder Patten led a company of seventy-five Caldwell County militia in an attempt to free three prisoners kidnapped by a mob. Although they achieved their objective, Elder Patten and two of his comrades were killed in the fighting.5 Elder Harold B. Lee noted: "I have thought it more than mere coincidence that one of the first martyrs in this dispensation, David W. Patten, a member of the Twelve Apostles, lost his life near the valley of Adam-ondi-ahman, that same valley in which Adam had gathered his posterity, which the Lord had revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith was near Wight's Ferry, at a place called Spring Hill, Daviess County, Missouri."6 On the day of Elder Patten's funeral, the Prophet Joseph said of him, "There lies a man that has done just as he said he would—he has laid down his life for his friends."7 The Lord himself acknowledged the faithfulness and the reward of David W. Patten in a subsequent revelation (see D&C 124:19, 130)” (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 4, "Doctrine and Covenants 114," Deseret Book).
“His (David Patton’s) faith in the restored gospel was such that he had once expressed to the Prophet Joseph Smith the desire to die the death of a martyr. ‘The Prophet, greatly moved, expressed extreme sorrow, ‘for,’ said he to David, ‘when a man of your faith asks the Lord for anything, he generally gets it.’28 At his funeral in Far West two days after the battle, Joseph Smith eulogized him: ‘There lies a man that has done just as he said he would—he has laid down his life for his friends’29 (Church History in the Fulness of Times Student Manual, 2nd ed. [Church Educational System manual, 2003], 200; quoting Joseph Smith, in Life of David W. Patten, 53).
“On his death bed, David W. Patten exclaimed, ‘O that they were in my situation! For I feel that I have kept the faith, I have finished my course, henceforth there is laid up for me a crown, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give me.’
To his wife, he said, ‘Whatever you do else, O do not deny the faith’ (Quoted by Heber C. Kimball, in Life of David W. Patten, 69).
The three most important relationships that you will form in your lifetime are with God, yourself, and Jesus Christ. This knowledge was necessary for the Saints to help get through what is called, "one of the severest trials for many of the Ohio saints," which we're gonna learn about today as we study Doctrine and Covenants section 111-114.
Welcome to the Sunday on Monday Study Group, a Deseret Bookshelf Plus Original brought to you by LDS Living where we take the "Come, Follow Me" lesson for the week and we really dig into the scriptures. I'm your host, Tammy Uzelac Hall.
Now if you're new to our study group, I just want to make sure you know how to use this podcast. So follow the link in our description and it's going to explain how you can best use this podcast to enhance your "Come, Follow Me" study, just like my friend, Eric Cinta Hansen. And this is so cool, because I just want to thank him for sharing with me that his understanding of Hebrew language has completely strengthened his testimony of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon, which I thought was awesome. So thanks for sharing that, Eric.
Now another incredible thing - and my favorite thing about the study group - is each week we're joined by two of my friends, so it's always different. And today we have two new guests. They've never been on before. We have Eleah Boyd and Denise Jensen. Hi, ladies.
Oh, hey, Tammy.
Oh, now this is so fun. Tell us how you both know each other.
Yeah. She has known me since I was born.
Kind of raised her.
Yep, I've know her since she was born.
Right? You kind of raised Eleah.
Yeah, I kind of raised her. I'm older than her. And she was kind of like my baby, you know. I took care of her a lot and changed her diaper and took her everywhere with me and pretended a lot that she was my baby.
And I loved every minute of it. And she always included me. I mean, I just felt like I grew up in the 70s, even though I was born in the 70s, because I loved her music. She's eight years older than me. And I felt like the sun rose and set around me because I was so loved by my big sisters. I just felt like I had these great moms who adored me. Always.
Yeah, there are times you know that we get frustrated with each other. Eleah could do no wrong, except, she was beautiful, except—
I know what you're gonna say.
You know exactly what I'm gonna say.
I wore your shoes. I'm a size 9 1/2 and so and Denise is a size nine. So you see the problem here is that I would wear her shoes and stretch them out.
Stretch them out. And she actually probably just did it on purpose, because then I would just end up having to give her my shoes.
It's so true,
Well played, Eleah. Well played. I love it. That's awesome.
Very well played.
Well, if you want to know more about my guests, you can read their bios and see their pictures of them in our show notes which are at LDSliving.com/SundayonMonday. So go check it out. They are so much fun. I think you're going to love them as much as I do by the time we're done with this episode today, because they have great stories. And what I love about them is they're not shy to share. That's kind of cool. They're not shy to share. They're not shy to share their stories. So this is going to be so awesome. Alright ladies, are you ready to do this?
Denise, Eleah 3:13
Okay, friends, so grab your scriptures and let's dig in. So I have a question for both of you. What is a folly?
I totally looked that up last night. I even wrote it down - what it is.
First, tell me, why did you look it up?
Well, I wanted to make sure it wasn't a sin. And what it ended up being is it is a foolish error because of ignorance. So you don't know what the right thing is. And so I kind of liked that.
I'm so glad you looked that up. It's one of the first odd words in Doctrine and Covenants Section 11 verse 1. And so you have to go in and look at verse 1 and mark that. In fact, Eleah, will you read verse 1 for us.
1 "I, the Lord you God, am not displeased with your coming this journey, notwithstanding your follies."
Thank you, very good. And so Doctrine and Covenants Section 111, the title for it is "Mission to Salem, Massachusetts - Follies." And what was interesting to me is that it was a way harsher word back then than it is today. In the 1828 Webster's dictionary, I thought it was interesting because the word folly also includes "conduct contrary to the laws of God or man." So I asked Denise to give us a little more context on the word folly that's mentioned in verse 1. Hit it, Denise.
So Jonathan Burgess came to Joseph Smith and said that he knew of a home where a widow who recently died, had a treasure hidden in her house. And so Joseph said, "Yeah, let's go for this treasure." And so I believe that is the folly that the Lord is talking about, that they went to look for this treasure and they should not have done that. It was a waste of time. And they should have been doing other things that the Lord wanted them to do.
Denise, that was an excellent retelling of the story, you're spot on. That's exactly what happened. Let me give you a little background of the conditions at the time, like, why would Joseph have even followed this lead? I mean, doesn't it seem random, like, oh, some widow's got some fortune hidden in her home? The Church was so poor at this time, because they had had to have money for Zions camp. And then they borrowed 10s of 1,000s of dollars to build the Kirtland Temple. And so Joseph is feeling the weight of the pressure to get out of debt.
And we have to remember, this isn't a weird thing that Joseph was doing. We've talked about this with Jenny Reeder and Anthony Sweat, that this was just a normal thing, treasure hunting, trying to find what the Spaniards left. I mean, this was so common back in this day. So when this opportunity came, he jumped on it. In fact, there's no record in all of the things I read about this, no one can guarantee that Joseph even asked the Lord if he should go. He just was like, money, gone. Let's go. And we're going to take care of business. And so on their way to Salem, Massachusetts - this is interesting, because we'll need to know this later on today - they actually stopped for a quick visit at their creditors in New York. So keep that in mind. We'll need to know that.
And like you said, Denise, Jonathan had no idea actually where the house was, or any of these things that had been said. And Joseph thought he had done his due diligence, and when they get there Jonathan's like, Yeah, I don't really know. I have no idea what's going on. And so going back to that word folly, the Lord says, I'm not displeased with your journey to Salem, Massachusetts, but I am with your follies. And so in the next segment, we're going to see why the Lord wasn't entirely displeased with the journey overall.
Segment 2 6:49
Now I want you guys to look at Doctrine and Covenants Section 111. And we're gonna look at verses 2 and 10. And here's what I want you to do. In verses 2, and then verse 10. Tell me what play on words does the Lord use to teach Joseph with?
He uses "treasure," and I think that because they were in such debt, and in their minds, all they're thinking is money. We need to get out of debt, we need to find money. Their journey is, let's find the money. But the Lord does have another treasure waiting there for them that they will soon discover is much more valuable than money.
Absolutely, Denise, thank you. In fact, mark those in verse two and 10. He says much treasure, much treasures. That's exactly it. And it's kind of cool to read Church history and find out what those "much treasures" are. In fact, they follow the Lord's counsel in verse 9, where it says, "inquire diligently concerning the more ancient inhabitants and founders of this city." So they did; they did their research. They visited historical sites where they were in Salem, and they learned that some of the residents of Salem, Massachusetts, and the surrounding New England area had been persecuted and killed as a result of religious intolerance and bigotry. So all of these events and touring around it led up to Joseph Smith writing in his own history these words, and so Eleah, I'm gonna have you read this. This is kind of cool.
"When will man cease to war with man, and wrest or take from him his sacred rites of worshipping his God, according as his conscience dictates?"
Excellent, and that wording sounds kind of familiar. And so later that will be part of reasoning for some of the Articles of Faith, specifically Article of Faith 11. And so there is much treasure there that they found that helped form the basis for him, our religious beliefs, and I just love this, this idea that there were more treasures. And so then we have to read verses 5 and 6, and then I have a question for you. So Denise, will you read verses 5 and 6, because here's what the Lord has to say to them about their debt.
5 "Concern not yourselves about your debts, for I will give you power to pay them.
6 " Concern not yourselves about Zion, for I will deal mercifully with her."
Okay, taking those into context on what's going on, and Joseph realizing he kind of messed up, here's my question: How does knowing who God and Jesus are and yourself get you through something like this?
So two things about these two verses is, these two verses were once an answer to a huge prayer of mine. I don't really remember what the exact story was. I just remember when it said "concern not yourself about Zion." I think what it said to me was concern not yourself about your family. Or, I will go mercifully with them like, don't worry so much. I've got it. I'm powerful. And I really started trusting and thinking of the Lord as my provider.
Even though I have a wonderful husband who does provide, I was missing that faith and trust in the Lord, that when things weren't going well for us, that I didn't need to worry. That He had it, I, we were all in His hands. I didn't need to stress, or try to come up with some scheme or whatever, that I could just turn to the Lord and trust that He would provide. And so the Lord has become that for me, as well as all the other things He is. He is a provider.
Oh, wow, Eleah. That is so cool. Because I didn't even have those verses marked really, until I read Section 111 for the first time. I love that you already had them marked and that they've already played a role in your life.
You know, it was, you know, when you first gave us this assignment, I have to admit, I read it and I almost called you to say I wouldn't do it. It's just like I really wanted to know, was the Lord disappointed in Joseph? Was He disappointed in me that we've had financial burdens, and that we've had debts that we couldn't pay? And I didn't want to get on this podcast and be like, I'm a loser.
I have follies.
I have follies. But it's just true. We all do, right? And we all have things that we're working on. And I don't know, it just really lifted me to continue to learn and study what the Lord was really saying here. And then to realize that He does have treasures for me. And it's not always what I'm needing temporarily at the moment, but with an eternal perspective. It's always what I need, provides what I need.
Oh, excellent. Excellent, Eleah. I'm so grateful they included this section. Seriously, think about it. Again, I go back to Joseph being like, Yeah, we don't really need Section 111. Can we just forget that even happened? Like, do You really have to keep talking about that? It's kind of embarrassing for Joseph, like, Alright, I messed up. What am I going to do with this, and I love how in verse 4 - and it's unique wording because it says:
4 "(And) it shall come to pass in due time that I will give this city into your hands, that you shall have power over it, insomuch that they shall not discover your secret parts;"
So highlight that; the footnote down below for the letter 'b' says shame, but what you need to know is that it's an idiom. "Discover your secret parts" is a Hebrew idiom that means "being thoroughly and publicly humiliated." And there's some really great cross references for that. But isn't that interesting that the Lord's telling Joseph, Don't worry, and guess what, you're gonna get through it, and we're gonna move on. So I love how He even covers the human aspect of this mistake. He's trying to make them feel better about everything. What a great Heavenly Father does for us, like I got your back here.
I think what sticks out to me after you tell that is, look at where we are in the Church today. Maybe in Joseph's lifetime, those debts weren't taken care of. But now if you look at where we stand as a church as a whole, not only do we have no debts, but we're criticized for having too much abundance. This is amazing. That was beautiful. Thanks for pointing that out to me.
Well, thank you.
The thing that I love is that the Lord let Joseph do it. And go and experience making this folly on his own, and making these decisions, doing this silly chasing after money, trying to find treasures, and the Lord, let him do it. To experience what it's like to do something without going to the Lord first and saying, Lord, should I do this? Can I do this? And then Joseph realized, "Oh, I guess I should never do anything without the Lord." Look it happens, you know, and it made me realize that that is what trials and tribulations are all about. The Lord lets us have them, but He is still always there for us. But He lets this happen, He lets us make choices. We have consequences based on those choices but the Lord is always there for us.
And not only that, but then He can take those mistakes or those follies or whatever we want to call them. And He can make them into something that we can't even imagine. And yeah, I think that's the beautiful thing. He's always on our side. He's on our side. He wants us to sit But he also wants us to trust him. And so that I think is what this is about. I'll let you, you know, learn to walk on your own a little bit, but then I'm going to be there to catch you. And then I'm going to hold your hand the rest of the way.
I don't even think it's necessarily just follies, mistakes that we make. I think it's things like, you know, I'm thinking of my sister who lost a baby. And how horrible that is. I'm thinking of my sweet husband and who lost a wife, and a sister, and a mom, and a dad, and an aunt all in two years, and how tragic that is. But all of the amazing blessings that the Lord gives you after you go through trials like that.
I'm thinking of myself and 25 years of a not great marriage. And the amazing blessing of an incredible husband that I have now. And so the Lord is always with us. And he lets us experience things because we have to, because it makes us stronger. It helps us to be there for other people.
I like that you just brought that up, Denise, because you're right. And going back to how we started - that when you know who you are, and who God is and who Jesus is, any circumstance you find yourself in, you will know your role. And God will teach you through that and He will use you. And so I'm so grateful that you connected that and brought that back up. That was perfect. So thank you, both of you for what you shared. Holy cow.
So Joseph and the men, here's what happens then. They return back to Ohio, and it's going to be almost an entire year before the next recorded revelation. So in the next segment, we're going to learn about what Joseph was doing during this gap and how it caused, like I said at the beginning, one of the severest trials for many of the Ohio saints.
Segment 3 17:02
My youngest daughter recently came to me and handed me her debit card. Now we have set our daughters up with checking accounts, and my youngest daughters, they babysit a ton. And so people want to Venmo them money. And so I'm trying to help teach them how to balance your money, and how to make sure that you know, just keep things in check or whatever.
And so my youngest came to me and she just said, "Mom, take my debit card, I've got to stop spending money." Because, bless her heart, she's got a tad of the ADD, she gets it from me. And she just has this impulse control when she has money she wants to spend it and so she goes to Amazon Prime and finds whatever she can. And bless you Amazon Prime and curse you at the same time.
So we're working with her on not spending every cent she has in her pocket. So I love that she brought me this card. It's like, "Mom, just hold this for me. My goal is to not spend any money for like a week." And we've gone two, so I'm really proud of her. And I'm just curious. How old were you guys when you first learned about financial issues or troubles? Do either of you ever have an experience about money stuff?
I was a teenager. And as soon as I got my first job, I started spending money. Of course we know that my obsession is and always has been shoes. Right, Eleah? I have in my house a room, it's called the "shoesical" room.
Are you serious?
Yes. Because first it was called the "shessing" room because it was the shoe room, but it was my husband's dressing room. But then he decided to take up the guitar again. So now he has guitars in there. So now it's called the "shoesical" room. Shoe room and musical room. And so I do have a shopping problem.
My husband is a financial advisor and every year we do a business meeting in Park City, (Utah). And so I just went to go buy a couple of new outfits for it. And I came home to hang them up and I had no room in my closet to hang them up. And I said, "I have a problem. I seriously have a problem; there is something wrong with me." So I went through my closet, and I just pulled a massive ton of clothes out. And then had my brother's girls come over and go through them and they took a whole bunch of clothes and the rest I'll just take to DI (Deseret Industries). But I have always had a problem spending money. But I've always had jobs and worked and earned my own money for it.
Well, I was really curious how you're going to answer this question, Denise, because, no, I really was because she's eight years older than me. We grew up really poor.
I knew we were poor. And I wondered you know, if you knew we were poor, but we just worked so hard in our family, and so even though we were poor, like the ways that I knew that we were poor was like at Christmastime and then birthdays, or when you went to a birthday party and you didn't have anything to give. Those money issues made me the opposite of Denise. I, I can't stand to spend money. I have issues with money in a different way.
So I, yeah, I mean, when you asked that question, when did you first know that that money things were an issue of yeah, like a very young age, kindergarten, first grade, not having new clothes, you know. All of our clothes were made. And our mom was an amazing homemaker and seamstress. So we always had everything we needed, because she worked so hard to give us those things. But we always knew that, or at least I always knew, that we didn't have any money.
Thank you very much for answering that question. I think a lot of us can relate to having financial troubles and worrying about money and paying off debts, just like Joseph had at this time. And this is what was so interesting to me, and it's a part of Church history that maybe we don't often talk about. It's important for us to talk about it. And that's why it's here in the Doctrine and Covenants because it did cause one of the most distressing, severest trials for many of the Saints.
And so here's what happened. In between Doctrine and Covenants Section 111 and 112, I mentioned earlier that they visited their creditors in New York. So during this time, Joseph had this idea to start his own Church-owned bank. He was actually denied a charter for a bank. So he's like, "Okay, then I'll just start my own thing. I'm going to call it the Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company." That's a mouthful. How clever is that. The problem is it didn't succeed. He began selling stocks and shares in October of 1836. And it just came crashing down. And it's so sad. There was a lack of experience. There were organized oppositions by non-Mormon interests in Ohio. Lawsuits, possible embezzlement by the tellers and cashiers who worked at the anti banking company. And then there was also a nationwide banking panic in May of 1837.
So this Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company, it failed. And it's interesting because in everything I've read, Joseph's sustained one of, if not the greatest financial loss, like everything he owned, he lost. And when he saw that it was tanking, he started to warn the members don't invest anymore. This is going down in a ball of fire. And so it's interesting that there were as many as 200 Saints, lost nearly all of their investment and their testimonies. Two (hundred) to 300 members apostatized. That was about 10 to 15% of Kirtland membership. A third of the church leaders were either excommunicated, disfellowshipped, or removed from their church callings; about half would return later. And this was one of the most severe trials for many of the saints. Now hearing all of this history, I want you think that you're one of these pioneers. How would this have affected you?
As you're reading that story, I'm just thinking, we lived in Utah for most of our married life, and we had business dealings with our friends and members of the Church. And sometimes those business dealings, they didn't always go according to what I thought was all honest and fair. And so there were many times in our married life where we felt very wronged financially by people who were in the Church. And I actually count that as such a huge blessing for us, because it really forced us to know where our testimony lies, where does it really lie?
Who do we have faith in? And the Prophet is a man and he was doing his thing, and trying to be a good person, and, and he made mistakes. But we don't worship a prophet, you know, we worship the Lord. And, of course, we follow the Prophet, and I do. But we also recognize that he's a man and he's growing and learning line upon line, just like the rest of us. I can't even imagine what Joseph's life was like. And if he gets something wrong once in a while, you know, I get it.
Eleah, I love that you said we don't worship or put our faith in a man. And then for you to say we know who we put our faith in. That was so powerful. And you're saying that from firsthand experience, I think that is incredible that you just were able to relate that.
It's a hard-won testimony. It's hard-won, because the pain, I ,mean. You know, my daughter asked my husband a couple days ago, "Dad, you know, how did you get over that betrayal?" And I don't like to call it that.
It was a betrayal. It was, it was a complete betrayal.
He said, "I'm not over it. I will never, because I lost dear friends, and we lost everything."
Literally my husband's like, "It's been eight years, and it still hurts every day."
Yep. And I think the pains hurt the Saints who came back, I think. But again, it goes back to you, what you said, and I know who I am and who God and Jesus are. And that's the only thing that matters. It has to weigh more than the betrayal and the hurt.
It does, it really does. And it's as hard as that is because we want to believe that we just don't deserve it. Right? I don't deserve this.
I pay my tithing.
What are you thinking?
I go to church.
Yeah. I don't deserve this.
You're so normal. And in the 20th century, I really feel like the Lord is saying, "You know what, the Saints are going to need this story. And they're going to need to know that they're not alone in their pain."
You know, it's so interesting. Going back to Section 111, in verse 11 - I thought this was so interesting - the advice that that He gives Joseph and the men before they leave. Eleah, read this verse.
11 "Therefore, be ye as wise as serpents, and yet without sin; and I will order all things for your good, as fast as ye are able to receive them. Amen."
Thank you, Eleah, thank you so much. You know this instruction to Joseph, it comes from Matthew Chapter 10, verse 16. So in that reference, the word "wise" in Greek means, "intelligent, prudent, or sensible." And the connection to the serpent is pretty profound.
Now I automatically thought of Eve and the serpent. And then like, why would God encourage men to, and us, to be like that, like, why would we want to be like the devil? Then I removed the connection with Satan, and I read this from a Methodist preacher from the 1700s. And here's what he had to say about this "be wise as serpents."
"The serpent is a very sharp-sighted, cunning creature, and uses various arts and stratagems for its own personal preservation, and especially of its head. And it is so far to be imitated by the followers of Christ as to make us all proper methods to preserve ourselves from the insults and rages of men, and to not expose ourselves to unnecessary dangers, as much as in us lies, that we should be careful to not just give occasion to offense or to irritate or to provoke us."
And I just love that idea of that's what it means to be wise as serpents and boy, I don't think there could be a time in history where we needed this counsel more than we do right now. Okay, so at this time, as a result of what we have already discussed, was the severest of many trials for the Ohio Saints. A few of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve, they just left their callings. I mean, we can see how devastating this whole thing was to everyone. And members leaving for missions without the knowledge and approval of a man by the name of Thomas B. Marsh, who was President of the Quorum of the Twelve.
So, Thomas wrote a letter to the Prophet Joseph Smith and asked for a meeting with him on July 24th of 1837. But before the meeting ever happened, Joseph was inspired and received revelation to set apart Heber C. Kimball to the First Presidency to preside over a mission in England, which was, by the way, the first foreign mission of the church. Then Joseph also sent Orson Hyde to be Heber C. Kimball's companion, along with Willard Richards and Joseph fielding Smith and others. So how would you be feeling if you were Thomas? This is heavy. Well, in the next segment, we are going to discuss that and what happened when Thomas arrived for the meeting.
Segment 4 28:36
Pretend you're Thomas. I mean, what are you thinking? How are you feeling about that?
Here's the thing. I know from reading that, that Thomas is upset. Because you know why? Because I think he has an ego. He's the President of the Quorum of the Twelve. But when I was reading it, here's how I am. I would say, "Oh, that's great, Joseph. You sent them on a mission, they're doing what the Lord wants them to do. That is fabulous. I am so happy. All right, let's just get everyone together that's here and let's just make a plan." And that's what I would do, but that's not what Thomas did.
Denise, you're so better than me, because I would have been, You should have at least consulted me first. I'm sorry. I would have, I'm like, Alright, listen, Joseph, I support your decision. But next time can you just talk to me for, I mean, I am the President of the Quorum of the Twelve.
Denise has no ego like that.
No, I don't. Not at all.
I love you, you're so sweet. Well, here's the thing I love about this because you're right, Thomas Marsh was so bitter. He was very mad. And what was interesting is, he marches himself to Kirtland to have this discussion with Joseph Smith, and the day before they're supposed to have this meeting, he actually approaches Joseph, and he has this change of heart. The Church history says that Thomas B Marsh, "approached him in the spirit of reconciliation." And at that point, Joseph Smith has a revelation for Thomas B. Marsh and that is what Section 112 is.
The section title is "Thomas B Marsh - Lord's Instruction to a Quorum President." Interestingly enough, he actually had Thomas B. Marsh be the scribe for this section. So here's Joseph giving this revelation and Thomas is writing all of the words down for HIM. Can you imagine that? And so I asked you guys ahead of time to look through Doctrine and Covenants Section 112 and tell me, what stood out to you that is great advice for us and great advice for Thomas B. Marsh?
Okay, so I have a thing I do with the scriptures, is every time the word "heart" or "love" is in the Scriptures, I just circle it. I don't know why I love the word "heart." And I love "love."
I do, too. I always, I put a heart right next to it. There's my heart, every time I see a scripture with love or heart. We are the same. Yes, I do it. Same-same.
So that is, first I just, like I'm reading it and I'm just circling the heart, heart, heart, right? But then, oh my goodness. It's all so direct. So in verse 2, He says:
2 "Verily I say unto you, there have been some few things in thine heart and with thee with which I, the Lord, was not well pleased."
Ooh, okay. So that was hard. And then He says, some, some good things. He says, "Let thy heart be of good cheer" in verse 4. And in verse 11, he says, "I know thy heart, and have heard thy prayers." And that was just beautiful. And then there's a couple more. In verse 28, He says, ". . . purify your hearts before me." That's before you can preach you have to purify your hearts. And then in 33, he says, "Cleanse your hearts, and your garments, lest the blood of this generation be required at your hands," which I wanted to look into more but didn't.
But anyway, just as I was thinking about it, I thought, you know, why is the Lord using this word? And it's because you know, have you, has your heart ever, like just hurt? Like, it was just so broken and you've actually like, felt your heart hurting? And I think that probably Thomas was feeling some pretty deep feelings.
I like that you shared that, Eleah. And all the times you marked heart. That is so profound, especially in verse 11, "I know thy heart." I marked that one too, and then how He talks about his heart; he had to have had a good heart, and to be of good cheer. I love the instruction in verse 11. I read that again this morning and thought this might be probably my favorite verse of scripture right now, this week. But I love how He says in verse 11, "I know thy heart, and I've heard thy prayers concerning thy brethren." Like, "I get it, I know that you could be upset.: But how beautiful is this: "Be not partial towards them in love above many others, but let thy love be for them as for thyself; and let thy love abound unto all men, and to all who love my name."
Can we just love everyone? "Thomas, I get it, you're allowed to be upset - I know your heart. And here's what I want you to do with that, just love everybody." And I just think of how many times in my membership of the Church where maybe there was something I didn't quite understand, or I needed to learn differently, or I was offended by something. And the Lord's like, "I know your heart. Let's just take a break right now and just love that person." And then when you pointed out the other one, again in verse 33, where shared "and cleanse your hearts," like the importance of what that's like. Those are great ones, thank you, Eleah. So good.
What about you, Denise?
When did you start doing that? I like that, Eleah. How come you've never shared that with me? Eleah. How come? What kind of sister are you? (laughter)
You know, we had a very loving father. He is one-quarter Italian. And so Sicilian, actually.
Oh, I love him.
He just, he was just like a big sack of love. Everywhere he went love was the answer to everything. Just love it away, kiss it away. Give it away. Don't hurt no more, you know, just love each other. I feel like the hearts and the love. It's just part of how I was raised.
Beautiful. Oh, it's beautiful. I love, I LOVE that. What about you Denise? What did you mark in Section 112 that was good advice for Thomas and for us today?
It's probably not exactly what you're you're looking for, but this is, was my question. So Thomas Marsh gets rebellious. My question is, the Lord knows what he's going to do - that he eventually will be excommunicated from the church. I just wonder sometimes why do people get called to callings that the Lord knows that they will be excommunicated from the Church? Why? I mean, I mean, why was he called to be President of the Quorum of the Twelve, when the Lord knew that he would eventually be excommunicated?
That's a great question, Denise, like, why? We've talked about this before. Why does the Lord call people to callings who He knows will fail?
But then, I do know, 20 years later he comes back to the church. Maybe that's why.
Well look at verse 3. I think verse 3 might be a great kind of foreshadowing. Alright, Denise, will you read that for us?
3 "Nevertheless, inasmuch as thou hast abased thyself thou shalt be exalted; therefore, all thy sins are forgiven thee."
That might be the verse that gets him through everything and brings him back.
I think my question is, why does the Lord allow these people in leadership to hurt other people?
Like, because their leadership affords them a certain place. And again, I think it comes down to, this is going to happen to us. Sad for Thomas Marsh, but he's like this great example to us of a lot of things that are going to be really hard in the Church. We're going to have to forgive people in leadership; we're going to have to look past their mistakes and the things that they do that hurt us. And we're going to have to find our own way through this life journey, with our own testimony.
And it goes back to the whole agency thing, I mean, time and time. He let Joseph have agency, He's letting Thomas have agency. I mean, He, God loves our agency more than our comfort.
Now, Eleah has been perfect her whole life.
That is so untrue.
She really has, no, it's not untrue. She has never strayed from the Church, not even for a second. I have had times in my life where I have not been active in the Church.
My marriage, my first marriage, was really a tough, tough, tough marriage. I was just in a point where I just couldn't handle life anymore at all. And I just didn't want to do anything. And so I just stopped going to church. It wasn't that I didn't believe in the gospel. It wasn't that I didn't love the Church. It wasn't that I didn't have a testimony. It was just, I just didn't want to go anymore. I just didn't want to deal with anything. And so I just didn't go. And it was two years. But I didn't go. I was just really struggling with life.
One day, I was at home. And I didn't like it when people came over without me knowing, right? And especially people from the Church.
She doesn't like that.
I don't like it, I don't like it at all. And so I went to the door and peeked through the peep hole. And there was a lady there and I had no idea who she was. Anyway, she had like, you know, cookies in her hand or something. So of course, I knew she was from the ward. I didn't answer the door. She put the cookies on the ground, and she left. And then pretty much almost every day, for a couple of weeks she came to my door. And I was just getting so frustrated. I was like, please lady just stop coming to my house.
So finally, I was so frustrated, I just opened the door and I just pulled the door open and I said, "What do you want?" And I looked at her and she looked at me, and I just started crying. And she just started crying. And I just hugged her. And we just hugged and I don't even know her, I didn't even know who she was and we just hugged. And she was the Relief Society President and she said, "I woke up every day and the Lord told me every day, 'go see Denise.'" From that day, I started going back to church.
Oh, my word Denise. That is such a great story.
And she was just an amazing woman and I just loved her so much. But it wasn't that I lost my testimony; it was just I just couldn't deal with life. But I learned when you can't deal with life, you have to have the gospel; you have to have the Relief Society. You have to have the people that love you and care about you and just call you and say, "Hey, let's go to lunch."
Okay, Denise. Wow, let's just stop for a second. Thank you. Thanks for sharing something so heartfelt. I really appreciate that. As you were sharing that, I'm thinking: you're verse 10. So Denise, will you read verse 10, for us? And then Eleah, will you read verse 22?
10 "Be thou humble; and the Lord thy God shall lead thee by the hand, and give thee answers to thy prayers."
Oh, and isn't that perfect for what I was just talking about?
Right? It made me think of that. And then verse 22
22 "Inasmuch as they shall humble themselves before me, and abide in my word, and hearken to the voice of my spirit."
And then look at 23, I'll read that:
23 "Verily, verily, I say unto you, darkness covereth the earth, and gross darkness the minds of the people, and all flesh has become corrupt before my face."
And then He goes on to say how being humble, you will be able to overcome that. And then it goes into what you said Eleah, purify your hearts, cleanse your hearts. We just saw that in real time, Denise. So, thank you for sharing your story, that was incredible. Wow. So good. Thank you ladies. That was so great. Ahhh.
Okay, so imagine in your minds at this time, then, the Kirtland - I need to make sure I say this right - The Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company has failed. Now, I want you to imagine at this time, then, that the Lord tells you, "All right, now pack up everything and you're going to leave, Joseph. Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company just failed. And now you're going to get out of here," and this is in January of 1838.
And so the Lord warns him to move his family from Kirtland as soon as possible. So that night that he got the revelation, he and his family pack up everything as fast as they can, and they begin this 798-mile journey. It's cold, it is bitter, it's difficult. And I know Missouri cold, it's like through-the-bone-cold, it's awful. And they leave and they go to Far West, Missouri, arriving in March. Because this is kind of interesting: The Missouri state legislature, they created what's called Caldwell County. It's to the north, and it's primarily a Latter-day Saint immigration. They allowed it for all immigrants to come there. And the city of Far West has now been established there.
So one month after Joseph's arrival, he begins keeping a record book known as, "The Scriptory Book of Joseph Smith." And in it he records revelations and answers to questions. So in the next segment, we're going to discover what specific question he asked and the revelation that he received.
Segment 5 42:37
I want to know from both of you, what do you do when you struggle to understand something you read in the scriptures?
I look for resource books.
Okay, perfect, great answer. What about you Eleah?
I ask my husband.
Excellent. But after this podcast, you're gonna, he's gonna be asking you. And next year, Old Testament.
Oh, it's gonna be amazing, Old Testament, right? So great.
Okay. Perfect answers. I love that you just said that. Because here's something about scripture that we know. God loves ambiguity. Thank you, Michael Wilcox. And He also loves symbolism. And that's the main point of Doctrine and Covenants Section 113. So the Saints are in Far West, Missouri. And some of the brethren asked Joseph Smith to clarify passages in Isaiah, specifically Chapters 11 and 52. So Joseph asks the Lord. Now this is something that I thought was pretty interesting, though, is when Moroni came to visit Joseph, he quoted from Isaiah Chapter 11, saying it was about to be fulfilled. And now we are going to learn today that Moroni was right. And I wonder if Joseph was like, "Oh, I know what scripture you're talking about, because it's me."
So the section title for Section 113 is "Insights Into the Book of Isaiah". Now, here's what I need everyone to do. I want you to grab crayons, colored pencils, pens, markers, whatever you need, watercolor, whatever your medium is, because we're going to Bob Ross the heck out of Doctrine and Covenants section 113. We're gonna draw and we're gonna draw some fun things, and I know many of you are really good at art. So if you don't mind sharing your pictures with us on Facebook, please do, because I want to see what you guys draw with these. As I read Isaiah chapter 11, verse 1, again, I want you to circle all of the items listed or you can write them down as you hear me read this. You guys ready? Okay.
1 "And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots."
Okay, tell me the things you circled. What are the items?
Denise, Eleah 44:46
Rod, stem, Jesse, branch.
And the very end of that verse out of his what?
Okay, before we begin drawing, highlight the name Jesse in that verse. So here's what we need to know about Jessie. He is the father of David, as in King David - David and Goliath David. So this verse is going to teach us about what is called the Royal Davidic Genealogical line. This is the family line that Christ comes from. So let's draw a stem.
But before you draw it, you need to know that the Hebrew definition of STEM in this verse is actually "stump." How cool is that? It means a stump. It can also mean a tree that has been cut down, or a tree that has been planted and is growing. So draw this picture of a stump, I thought that was kind of cool. I am not good at art, so I can't wait to see what some of you're able to come up with.
Now the next word that you guys marked, we have a rod. And this was interesting. A rod is, "a new growth and it's coming out from the stem or the stump." So this rod is like a new branch that's growing out. And then we're going to skip branch for just a minute. So you've got these things you're drawing at, some of you are probably putting beautiful grass along the bottom. You know, something growing nice and a bird, I don't know. I'd have a sun in the corner of my piece of paper with a smiley face in it, rays shooting out cuz I can't draw.
Okay, so they ask, what in the world does that verse mean? Who is the stem? What is the rod? What is the root? And Doctrine and Covenants Section 113 verses 1-5 give us the answers. So now we can label this. So here we have the first thing in verses 1-2, it says "Who is the stem of Jessie spoken of?" And I like how verse 2 is the answer: "It is Christ." The stem or the stump is the dead stump of Jesus Christ when He was crucified. Isn't that interesting? Like it got cut off, but it's not going to end there.
What is the rod spoken of? Verse 4.
4 "Behold, thus saith the Lord: It is a servant in the hands of Christ, who is partly a descendant of Jesse as well as Ephraim, or of the house of Joseph, on whom there is laid much power."
And according to all scholarly sources, the rod is Joseph Smith. The branch and Isaiah 11 is Christ. And I love the connection of how we have this live branch growing out of a dead stump, because some scholars believe that the dead stump represents the Savior's death on the cross, and that the live branch represents his resurrection. I thought that was pretty cool. And now we have all these roots. So draw the roots coming out of the bottom of that stump, because I thought this was really cool. And the question was, "What is the root of Jesse spoken of?" And that's in verse 5. And Denise, will you read verse 6 for us.
6 "Behold, thus saith, the Lord, it is a descendant of Jesse, as well as of Joseph, unto whom rightly belongs the priesthood, and the keys of the kingdom, for an ensign, and for the gathering of my people in the last days."
So this is Joseph Smith, who is going to be and highlight the word ensign. That ensign (ensine) or (ensin), it's any signal to assemble, or give notice. So this person is going to be an ensign, going to symbol or give notice for the gathering of my people in the last days. That is exactly what Joseph Smith helped to restore: are the keys of that priesthood of gathering. And then I put next to it, because whenever there's a root on a tree, is there just one root?
There's many aren't there?
There's many, many, many.
So how fabulous is it that it's all of the prophets and apostles that are helping to bring forth this good news. To be this ensign, this clarion call that we're going to, we're going to assemble and we're going to gather. Boy, if that isn't President Nelson, right? For sure.
So good at doing this. So I put Joseph Smith and then many prophets next to that. All right, what did you guys draw? Were you able to dry anything?
I didn't I didn't because all I have is the phone.
I don't know, it's in green pen. But as I was drawing, I think what kind of spoke to me the most were the roots. I don't know. I, it's really symbolic and I'm not totally, not an artist, despite everybody else in my life being one. But as I was drawing all those roots, I thought, all of this that has come to culminate into the most important thing, which is the Savior of the world atoning for our sins. But there's so much that came before to prepare the way for that and how cool that we get to be a part of any of it. I mean, I just feel so humbled that I know these things and that I know my Savior.
Thank you, Eleah. What is it about the symbolism of this dead stump? And then this rod or new branch What does that tell us about Christ and the gospel?
It cannot be stopped. You can try, you can take it down to where you think that it's not going to grow anymore. But it will find a way and it has found a way. And now it is blossoming and moving through the earth. It's pretty amazing.
It's a such a unique analogy, isn't it? Of all the things that He could have related it to, He's going to start with this dead stump that you think, "Oh, all hope is lost." And then, "Oh, no, look, a little branch." I love this analogy in all of this.
So go back into verse 6, because He talks about how the keys of the kingdom, how magnificent it was that when the Kirtland Temple was dedicated, that the keys were restored, and why He waited for a temple, I just think all of this is coming together. And it's combining so beautifully as we're talking about the last days. So I just think it's awesome. I love the imagery. I love ambiguity, and I love how the Lord works. He makes you think; the wheels are turning as you're drawing this picture in there. Like, of all the things He could have used. It's a great application, I just think it's so cool.
Alright, so that's the end of Section 113. Again, I love verses 7-10. Go study them, because it is so cool about women priesthood power; everything is awesome. We're not gonna have time for it, it makes me so sad. Maybe next time when we do Doctrine and Covenants, we'll just hit those verses instead. So going back to the word ensign because it's such a familiar word in our religion and our culture. Many of you probably still have magazines in the plastic, that say Ensign on them, I'm not going to judge you. In the next segment, we're going to learn about the ensign that we can all be when we very least expect it.
Segment 6 51:16
Alright, I asked these ladies this question ahead of time, cuz I really wanted them to think about this. Here is my question: When have you followed the counsel of the Lord and found that it prepared you for something that you had not expected? So either you have an experience?
So Denise, do you have one?
No, go ahead, Eleah.
Okay. Literally, this is my life. I'm a "why" person, like why, why, why? The one that recently happened was in 2019, I graduated, I got my bachelor's degree. And so you know, it was the Lord in the first place who told me to go back to school and get my degree. And so then I did it. And whoa, I'm so cool. And so I'm going to do something great with this degree, you know, and I'm going to go back and I'm going to get, I'm going to keep getting my master's and I'm going to do all this. But the Lord, from the time I graduated, he just kept planting this little seed in my heart that what I was really going to do was I was going to homeschool my youngest son.
So with my son - he is autistic - and he's on the spectrum (autistic spectrum disorder), and he also has oppositional defiant disorder. He does not take direction very well. But the Lord kept saying, "You're going to homeschool home, homeschool him." And I just kept saying, "No, no, no." And finally, like in February of 2020, I said to my husband, "I think that I have to do this." So Spring break was coming up, and I was prepared, my heart was prepared and I said, "After spring break, Wilson, you're not going to go back to school, you're gonna stay home with me and we're gonna homeschool."
Well, in spring of 2020, spring break came and spring break ended and nobody went back to school. (Covid) And not only was I homeschooling my son Wilson, but you know, my other two kids were home as well.
When I got my bachelor's eegree, I thought, "I am going to do something so fabulous with this. I'm going to teach, or, you know, change the world with my bachelor's degree."
Money, get a job. Yeah.
Right. Yeah, money is really what I was thinking like, "I'm gonna earn a living somewhere." But the Lord had something totally different in mind. And I have to tell you that that year and a half that I have spent with Wilson, who just went back to school now, he's a freshman (in high school).
He was so sweet. He grew so much. He got all A's and B's. He flourished spiritually, emotionally, mentally. It was beautiful. It was not what I would have ever chosen for myself. But as I daily just sought the Lord in prayer and fought with him a little bit about how I can't do it. I'm not good enough. There's no way he prepared me and prepared my heart and mind to do something that I would never have believed I could do.
That was beautiful, Eleah.
Eleah, what was your degree in? I'm curious.
In Marriage and Family from BYU–Idaho. I mean, my, it was just a wonderful experience and I still, I am planning to continue and do my master's degree in counseling and psychology - school psychology.
Well, I'm sorry. Marriage and family therapy? That is a degree you would need to be able to homeschool, more than accounting. I mean, sorry for anyone who does accounting, but to be able to know the skills of how to work with kids and family and you learn a special set of skills.
Right, "You're gonna learn these skills so you can homeschool you son." That's not good enough.
I gotta do something bigger.
If God had told you that was why you were going back you'd be like, "Yeah, I'm not going back."
Wow, that's a great story. Eleah, thank you for sharing that. That was spot on.
Denise, do you have one that comes to mind?
About six years ago, when I was 50 I was single. And I just kind of thought, "I'm so tired of dating. I'm just not going to date anymore." So I just kind of stopped for awhile and I just kept getting a really strong impression that I needed to put a profile on the LDS Planet dating site. I was a first counselor in Relief Society presidency in my ward. And I had a job and I worked a lot and wanted to just hang out with my friends. Plus, I wasn't very good at picking people to date, right, Eleah?
That is so true.
I guess I was really bad at picking people and so I'm just tired of finding stupid people to date. So I just didn't and then, really strong impression again, you know, to just put a profile on LDS Planet.
One day, I had a friend that came over and she had just broken up with her boyfriend and she was crying, crying, crying. And so she said, "Will you help me put a profile on LDS Planet?" And I said, "Okay, okay, I will," and then I was putting one on for her and had a really strong impression that I needed to put one on. So I did.
And a really strong impression came to me: date a widower. And I was like, I've dated all the widowers, I don't like any of them, you know. I lived in Pleasant Grove, Utah. And then a really strong impression came to me: look in St. George, Utah, and I was like, WHAT? Okay, fine, whatever. So I looked in St. George, Utah. And the first picture that came up was this really cute, handsome man with this really big, beautiful smile and beautiful teeth. And I thought, okay, I'll just say 'hi' to him. And so I said 'hi' to him. And he messaged me back and said, "Oh, I'm going to be in your area next Friday. Do you want to have dinner?" I said, "Sure."
So long story short, we dated for a little while. And after a couple of months, my father died. I was really sad. And he said, "Do you want me to go to the funeral with you?" And I was like, "It's in Texas." And he said, "That's okay." And I said, "Sure. You would meet my whole family." And he said, "That's okay." And I said, "Okay."
Poor guy (laughs).
So he went with me to the funeral of my father, and he met my whole family, and Eleah, tell me what you thought.
I mean, he walked in the door. And we all just said, "Yes, please, please." It was just easy.
All the other times, and there were times let me just tell you, where I felt like I had to run interference between her feelings and emotions about somebody because she just loves everyone. And she doesn't see sometimes. And there was nothing to see. Shane is just, he's a beautiful soul. And he has been the best thing that's ever happened to Denise, you know, besides her three beautiful daughters. I'm so glad that she married him.
It was the Lord. The Lord directed me to him. And I know that. It was just wonderful, beautiful, and amazing.
Well ladies, thank you, both of you for your stories, because that is sort of the premise behind Doctrine and Covenants Section 114. It's this idea that when the Lord asks you to do something, he's preparing you or a person for something that had never been expected. And it's pretty amazing, cuz it's only two verses long. But if you know the story behind David W. Patton, in fact, the title for Section 114 is "David W. Patten, Man of Faith."
So Section 114 is two verses. And here's what we need to mark in this is found in verse 1. It says
1 "Verily thus saith the Lord: It is wisdom in my servant David W. Patten, that he settle up all his business as soon as he possibly can, and make a disposition of his merchandise, that he may perform a mission unto me next spring, in company with others, even twelve including himself, to testify of my name and bear glad tidings unto all the world."
I want us to underline "perform a mission unto me next spring," and then "to testify of my name and bear glad tidings and to all the world."
So this was given in April. About six months after this revelation was received in the fall of 1838, there was severe hostility and persecution happening. In fact, this is kind of interesting story: On October 24th, a mob kidnapped three of the Saints, and they were actually planning to kill them that night. And so upon hearing this, the local judge - his name's Elias Higby, and he was a member of the Church - he ordered Lieutenant Colonel George M. Hinkle of the State Militia, who was also a member of the Church, to organize a group of men to disperse the mob, and rescued these three prisoners or people who had been kidnapped.
Now, insert the story of David W. Patten. So I asked Eleah to help me tell the story. So Eleah, tell us what happens and how there were 75 men gathered that night to fight and to free these people who had been kidnapped.
Elder David W. Patten was there, acting as their captain. They thought they were gonna surprise the mob and then be able to rescue the prisoners without bloodshed. As they approached the Crooked (Crookt) River I think or maybe the Crooked River, a hidden member of the mob fired a shot and shot Patrick O' Banyan, one of the Saint's Militia. And then Captain Patten had 15 men somewhere else, and he heard that, led towards the area, and then it was just a fight, and several men were wounded. Gideon Carter died, Patrick O'Banyon died, and Elder Patten, sadly, was among the wounded. And then he died several hours after the battle.
Uh, isn't that such a sad ending? Like, they didn't even think that it would turn violent and it did. This is sad. But I want us to look at this in the context of this quote about David Patten. So Denise, will you read this for us?
"His faith in the restored gospel was such that he had once expressed to the Prophet Joseph Smith a desire to die the death of a martyr. Prophet, greatly moved, expressed extreme sorrow for, said he to David, 'When a man of your faith asks the Lord for anything, he generally gets it.'"
Doesn't it wanna give you chills?
Yeah, that is amazing.
Wow. And just before Elder Patten's funeral in Far West, Joseph Smith pointed to Elder Patten's body, and this is what he said. "There lies a man that has done just as he said he would. He has laid down his life for his friends." And so going back to Section 114, isn't it interesting? Look again at verse 1. What did the Lord tell Joseph to do? Like you, Eleah. He couldn't have said, Listen, you're gonna die in about six months. But instead he prepared them. And what did he have him do?
Well, he told him to settle up his business, I guess take a position of his merchandise. I don't know really what that means. But I just imagine like, get your affairs in order. And, oh, my goodness, you know, who knows what things he was able to do for his family before that happened that made them more comfortable or help them. But ah, the Lord is so good to us.
Yeah, in fact, Eleah, will you read - I think is so interesting that we even have this - this is what David W. Patten exclaimed on his deathbed:
"Oh, that they were in my situation where I feel that I have kept the faith, I have finished my course. Henceforth, there is laid up for me a crown, which the Lord, the righteous Judge will give me. Oh, and then to his wife, he said, 'Whatever you do else, Oh, do not deny the faith.'"
Thank you. Then, so here's my final question for you, ladies. How does knowing who God is, and who you are, and who Jesus is help us in this life, in all of our follies and all of the yuck?
You know what, Tammy? I have to say this, okay. It takes me back to Doctrine and Covenants 93 verse 1.
Oh, I got to go there.
1 "Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am."
Hold on. I'm writing this down as a cross reference next to Section 114. I'm doing cross reference, Doctrine and Covenants 93 verse 1, exactly that David W. Patton was and lived. That was so good, Denise. Thank you for that cross reference. Love it. What about you, Eleah?
I have to clarify something. I physically have never left the Church but that doesn't mean that I'm not a doubter. I have doubts all the time. But I don't doubt something, and that is that Jesus is the Christ. And that I can't doubt the way I feel when I discuss these principles. When I read the Doctrine and Covenants, when I step inside the House of the Lord, I can't doubt. It's impossible. And so when I struggle, or when bad things happen to me or to the people that I love, it just comes down to one thing: Do I know my Heavenly Father? And do I know my Savior, Jesus Christ? And the answer is yes. And so man, I'm stuck here. This is it. I'm in, I'm all in. And I can't go, because I physically, emotionally, mentally, I would cease to be who I am without the knowledge of who God is to me.
Amen. Oh my gosh, amen, Eleah and Denise, thank you. Wow. Thank you ladies. That's the end. In fact, even, I'm not gonna lie. This morning when I was praying before we started, I was like, Heavenly Father, there's just some sections that you're kind of like really, we really got to cover these? There's just not a lot of depth, not a lot of meat. Boy, I stand corrected. Because that was meaty, meaty. So thank you for bringing your stories and for being willing to be vulnerable. I just love you both. I love you.
Denise, Eleah 1:06:22
Oh, we love you. We love you.
Okay, so gather, gather your thoughts and just share a quick takeaway. What was something that you learned? You're like, huh!
Well, I didn't know that story about a woman who came to my sister's door. And that's my takeaway. Thank you to her whoever she was. Because Denise, she didn't even begin to tell you just how hard her life really was. But you just pray, that's all you can do when you're on the outside, looking in on somebody that you love so much. And you pray that there will be somebody there; you pray that that woman will knock on your someone's door. And oh, God bless her wherever she is for what she did in helping my sister when I couldn't.
Beautiful takeaway, beautiful.
I am grateful that we studied these verses, because I always want to remember the Savior and always want to be living the Gospel. I would hate to have a life without my family. I would hate to be somewhere in the end without my sisters, without my family. Add to what Leah was saying, I was talking to my youngest sister the other day on the phone, and she was crying. And she said, I remember when I would get down on my hands and knees and cry and cry and cry, and pray and pray that you were safe, and that you are okay. And that, and that nothing would harm you, and that you would be safe, and that you would come visit us, and that you would come home to us. Just family is so important. And I love these scriptures because it helps me understand how important it is to follow the prophet and do what they say. And does that make sense?
No, it did. Thank you, Denise. I mean, you can tell how much both of you, you can tell how much you love your family and each other. That's, that's my first takeaway is how much you guys love each other. Also, my takeaway from both of you, you both were witness to me and testified about this idea in who you believe in. And you definitely know who you are. And you know who God and Jesus Christ are.
And I just love how that segment where you both talked about, "I know who my faith is in and it is in Jesus Christ." And thank you for being a witness of that to me, as you shared that, I get really, that whole segment struck my heart so hard. And that's what it boils down to. No matter how hard life gets and the circumstances you're dealt, or whatever happens or comes your way, it's about Jesus and our Heavenly Father and turning to them and humbling ourselves and saying, Okay, use me, what can I do? And He will, so thank you both. Thank you, I love you both so much.
Denise, Eleah 1:09:27
Thank YOU - We love you. Will you be our sister?
Of course I will, draw up the papers, send 'em over.
Yay! And bring Caralee along with you.
Oh yeah, and my sister , she will love...I can't wait to talk to her how she, you guys both know each other. So fun. So thank you. Thank you. Thank you, you guys are great. That's it. We're done! Two beautiful hours, seriously, I cannot thank you enough how much you added to today's discussion. So thank you for following the spirit.
Thank you. All right, I'm just dying to hear what your takeaways are from this episode and I truly want to see your art. So send in those tree trunks.
If you haven't already joined our discussion group on Facebook or Instagram, just go do it. And it's so much fun because I love to read what people have to say and questions they have to ask. And then at the end of the week, on a Saturday, we post a call for your big takeaway, so comment on the post that relates to this lesson, and let us know what you've learned. I read all of them, and I love hearing what you guys are learning.
You can get to both our Facebook and Instagram by going to the show notes for this episode on LDSLiving.com/SundayonMonday. And when you go there you can actually find also the show notes, which we have so many references in this episode - lots of history in this one - and a complete transcript of this whole discussion. So go check it out.
The Sunday on Monday study group is a Deseret Bookshelf Plus Original and it's brought to you by LDS Living. it's written and hosted by me, Tammy Uzelac Hall and today our incredible study group participants, and sisters who love each other dearly, were Eleah Boyd and Denise Jensen. And you can find more information about these ladies at LDSliving.com/SundayonMonday. Our podcast is produced by Erika Free and me, and it's recorded and mixed by Mix At 6 Studios and our Executive Producer is Erin Hallstrom.
Thanks for being here. We'll see you next week, and you better remember, in the middle of your follies, you're still God's favorite.
Transcribed by Jenee Uzelac