Henry A. Stebbins
Book of Mormon Lectures
(Lamoni, IA: RLDS Church, 1894, 1901)
BOOK OF MORMON
Being a Series of Nine Sermons Delivered
in the Saints' Church, Independence,
Missouri, on the Evenings of
February 13-21, 1894. Corrected
and Revised for this Edition.
BY ELDER HENRY A. STEBBINS
PUBLISHED BY THE BOARD OF PUBLICATION OF THE
REORGANIZED CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST
OF LATTER DAY SAINTS.
Copyrighted 1901, by the BOARD OF PUBLICATION of the
Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,
Publishers and Proprietors.
HERALD PUBLISHING HOUSE.
[ iii ]
This book is a revised and enlarged copy of the Book of Mormon Lectures that were delivered by the author in the Saints' chapel, Independence, Missouri, on nine successive evenings during February, 1894. They were given by the joint invitation of the Religio-Literary Society and the Sunday-school of that branch of the church. Sister Belle Robinson (now James) reported them in shorthand and their publication was immediately begun in Zion's Ensign. Also an edition of about one thousand copies in paper covers was issued that summer. The books were sold at the cost of publication. The work was well received, apparently filling a place in the advocacy of our cause which no other book did, owing, perhaps, to the narrative method of treating the subject and the taking the various colonies in their order, also therewith giving proper proofs from many antiquarians, historians, and scientists, in connection with the synopsis of the story of the peoples that came to America in ancient times.
But those books were all sold several years ago, and many demands for copies have continued to come in since then. As the only wish of the author was to get the work before the people, therefore it was given into the hands of the Board of Publication, to be published without profit to him, and the result is now before you.
Since doing this the author has revised and corrected the original, and also added much more to the book from the great store of antiquarian and historical material that has been piling up during the past sixty years, especially the past thirty years, in favor of the book that has been advocated for more than seventy years as a book of divine truth. No library in the church contains all the books that have been quoted from, but by gathering from
various sources such as were not in my own collection, I have been able to give verbatim copies from all excepting Lord Kingsborough's works and a few minor items used herein. With the extracts are given the volumes, chapters, and verses quoted from. To Elder S. F. Walker's publication in Autumn Leaves in 1889 we are indebted for the things quoted from Kingsborough.
In conclusion the author mentions his admiration for the wonderful manner in which mountains of evidence have been accumulated in favor of the latter-day work. Truly God has been moving upon the hearts of men to travel far and to undergo hard toil in behalf of a work they knew not of, but, nevertheless, have labored for as well as if they knew what they were doing. Since 1840, in particular, have scientists and explorers been toiling to bring forth mighty evidences in favor of both the Bible and the Book of Mormon, one set in the Old Continents and another in the New World, and when some return from their quest others go out in their places and take up the work for new developments or discoveries. While we admire the courage and genius of men we give thanks unto God for the moving of his Spirit to set the wheels in motion and to fire the hearts of those who are working to his praise and towards the redemption of the nations of the earth from darkness and sin, that they may become blessed and happy under the rulership of the divine King when he comes to reign. HENRY A. STEBBINS.
LAMONI, Iowa, December 14, 1901.
[ v-vi ]
LECTURE 2.26 What the Book of Mormon is -- Boat Construction -- Colony Arrives in Central America and Begins a National Existence -- Proof Presented from Antiquarians
LECTURE 3.47 Records Kept -- System of Writing -- Christ Revealed -- Great Nation from Babel Colony -- Two Civilizations -- Migration into North America
LECTURE 4.81 Palenque, Uxmal, and other Cities -- The Mound-Builders -- Ohio Mounds and their Contents -- Lake Superior Mining -- Age of River Terraces and Skeletons
LECTURE 5.111 Second Colony -- Hebrew History -- Zedekiah and Jeremiah -- Joseph of Egypt -- A Cedar to Grow in his Land -- Journey from Jerusalem
LECTURE 6.138 From Red Sea through Arabia -- The Compass -- They Cross Indian and Pacific Oceans -- Landing in Peru -- Fertility of Peruvian Soil -- Nephi Writes their History -- A Branch of Israel -- Lamanite Rebellion -- Division of Colony -- Nephite Faith and Doctrine -- America a Land of Liberty
LECTURE 7.163 Knowledge of Christ -- Righteousness and Baptism Taught -- Wars between Lamanites and Nephites -- Peruvian History and Products -- Go North into Colombia -- Find Zarahemlaites -- Zeniff's Company -- Mosiah as King and Translator
LECTURE 8.194 Location of Sidon River and Manti Land -- Polygamy and other Evils -- Alma as First Chief Judge and Missionary -- Many Lamanites Converted -- Helaman, son of Alma -- By Sea and Land into Central Amerioa -- Sign of Christ's Crucifixion
LECTURE 9.233 Savior Appears among Nephites -- Cross a Common Emblem found -- Quecalcoatl -- Manners and Customs of Hebrews and Indians -- Mexican Temples -- Hebrew Relies -- Nephite Decline -- List of their Records -- A Sacred Book -- Jewish Restoration -- Relics liound in United States -- Conclusion
[ vii ]
Antiquarians and historians. thirty-two named, 66-76.
Apocryphal Old Testament, 127.
Baldwin, John D., 8, 43, 50-53, 58-65, 67, 69, 73, 88-98, 145 146, 174, 176, 179, 204. 217, 224, 227, 236, 271, 272.
Banoroft, Hubert H., 9, 10, 11, 22, 34, 70-72, 82, 118, 237, 249, 250, 265.
Bollaert. William, 75.
Boudinot, Elias, 245, 247, 248.
Bradford, Alexander W., 76.
Brasseur de Bourbourg, Charles E., 72, 227.
Brownell, Henry., 74, 135, 278.
Catlin, George, 176, 228, 243.
Chambers' Encyclopaedia, 139.
Champollion, Jean Francois, 29, 30.
Charnay, Desire, 8, 27, 35, 45, 57-62, 72, 213, 221, 242, 243, 269.
Darwin, Charles, 242, 243, 260.
Delafield. John Jr., 73.
Del Rio, Captain, 18, 67.
Donnelly, Ignatius, 74, 175, 237.
Dupaix, Captain, 19, 69, 241, 251, 272.
Eusebius Pamphili, 56.
Ford, Thomas, 233.
Foster, John W., 73, 88, 204, 228.
Friederichsthal, Baron, 72.
Gallatin, Albert, 11, 90.
Haines, Elisha M., 154, 244-248.
Humboldt. Baron Alexander von, 12, 13, 17, 66, 148, 273.
Inspired Version of Bible 5, 6, 33, 55.
Johnson's Encyclopaedia, 22, 75, 140.
Josephus, Flavius, 5, 7, 33.
Kingsborough, Lord, 10, 73, 133, 157, 158, 237-241, 251, 264.
Las Casas, Bartolome, 50, 51, 52, 217, 238.
Lederer, G. R., 255, 256.
LePlongeon, Augustus, 26, 77, 220.
Manifold Encyclopedia, 177-179, 186.
Maury, Lieut. Matthew F., 22, 41.
Mayer, Brantz, 76.
Montesinos, Ferdinand, 74, 146, 218.
Norman, B. M., 72.
Pslaoios, 19, 52, 67.
Pimm and Seeman, 75.
Prescott, William H, 74, 133, 148, 156, 181-186.
Prichard, James C., 175.
Priest, Josiah, 11, 12, 15, 18, 34, 67, 68, 144, 254, 265, 273. 276-278.
Rice, Allen Thorndike, 8, 29, 58, 59.
Short, John T., 74, 175, 248.
Siguenza, Carlos, 70.
Spalding. Solomon, 24.
Squier, Ephraim G., 19, 43, 73, 75, 148, 260.
viii RUINED CITIES NAMED.
Wagner and Seherer, 75.
Waldeck. Frederic de, 60, 72.
Walker, Samuel F., 237, 240, 251, 285, 286.
Wesley, John, 270.
Whittlesey, Charles, 78, 93, 94.
Williams, Helen Maria, 17, 66.
Winchell, Alexander, 276, 279.
Zavala, Lorenzo de, 72.
RUINED CITIES NAMED.
Chichen-Itza, 60, 63, 82, 86.
Copan, 71, 224.
Izamal, 29, 82.
Mitla, 51, 61, 64.
Palenque. 18, 57, 69, 64, 68, 82, 84, 86, 229, 242, 251.
Tula, 63, 213, 214.
Uxmal, 61, 62, 78, 82, 84, 86, 329.
[ 3 ]
As an introduction I state that the Sunday school and Religio society of Independence have decided in favor of a course of lectures being given upon the evidences in defense of the Book of Mormon as an inspired book, a book containing divine truth; and, having chosen their speaker, this lecture is the beginning of the series. I will say in advance that I feel my inability to do the subject justice; yet, when my mind dwells upon the weighty facts and conclusive proofs that have come to light since 1829, the year when that book was copyrighted, my reluctance grows less about attempting to fill your requirements and to occupy as you have so kindly called me to do. But your prayers are necessary, to the intent that the Lord will instruct and aid me to present the truth in a clear and convincing manner.
My heart bids me to say first that I am fully convinced that our message to the world is not a deception upon us nor a fraud upon others. For not only are the principles of the gospel of Christ great and eternal truths, which we preach, but the book under discussion, as the history of ancient American peoples, is also true and fully substantiated, not only by Bible prophecies, but also by abundant discoveries of science, by a wonderful array of archaeological ruins and antiquarian remains, by many historical facts developed since its publication, by the traditional history of tribes and nations, and, finally, by the internal evidences found in the book itself, they being historical,
4 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
kingdom. This account...
(pages 4-13 not yet transcribed)
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 5
chiefs of families...
6 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
This unexpected confusion...
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 7
Egypt was builded by Mizraim...
8 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
declarations that God...
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 9
10 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
Culchuacan; and... the dumb...
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 11
is found in the histories...
12 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
seem to have retained...
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 13
Tezpi, seeing that...
14 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
kingdom. This account must have come from the Jaredites themselves, because it is a detailed statement of their journey across land and sea to this country; how they were guided and instructed by the Lord, as we will find by further investigation.
Here I will mention a remarkable coincidence that I have never seen nor heard presented by any one, and I consider it to be a very valuable proof of the book. We read as follows in the Book of Mormon:
"Jared came forth with his brother and their families, with some others and their families, from the great tower, at the time the Lord confounded the language of the people... And... the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord, and the Lord had compassion upon Jared; therefore he did not confound the language of Jared; and Jared and his brother were not confounded. Then Jared said unto his brother, Cry again unto the Lord, and it may be that he will turn away his anger from them who are our friends, that he confound not their language. And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord, and the Lord had compassion upon their friends, and their families also, and they were not confounded." -- Book of Mormon, small edition, Ether 1:1.
Thus the account given in this book teaches us that they prayed unto the Lord that they might be permitted to understand each other's speech so that they could journey together. For, if they understood each other, they would be able to carry on the business in which they were associated, namely in their emigration and their labors, and in settling and improving the new country. Now we take up, in proof of this history of the Jaredites, the following language from Josiah Priest's work:
"They say the tongues which the dove gave to mankind, were infinitely varied; which, when received, they immediately dispersed. But among them were fifteen heads or
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 15
chiefs of families, which were permitted to speak the same language, and these were the Taltecs, the Aculhucans, and Aztecs, nations who embodied themselves together, and traveled, they knew not where, but at length arrived in the country of Aztalan, or lake country in America." -- American Antiquities, p. 206.
And the Toltecs, who had a like tradition, say that their fathers were seven in number, who, with their wives, understood each other's speech, and then, after crossing great lands and seas, and undergoing many hardships, finally arrived in America.
The foregoing is a weighty evidence in favor of the book, and it is quoted from Priest by Bancroft the historian. It is stated as being a fact, and you will notice this marvelous agreement with the Book of Mormon. Bancroft's works were published in 1875. Priest was first published in 1833, having been copyrighted on the 21st of March, 1833, which was nearly four years after the Book of Mormon was copyrighted. And upon this point I call your attention to the fact that Priest's work (there is a copy here which may be examined by any one) was not entered in the office of the clerk of the Central District of New York until the 21st day of March, 1833, while the Book of Mormon was copyrighted on the 11th day of June, 1829. Now there is a difference of nearly four years in favor of the Book of Mormon, yet some of our opponents have said, as I heard Mr. Clark Braden say in a public lecture concerning Mr. Priest's work, that it was published in 1824.
Until 1891 I had never seen a complete copy of that rare work, one that included the title-page, copyright, and preface. In October of that year I was passing along Twelfth Street, Kansas City, and seeing a second-hand book-store, I entered it, and one of the first books that I saw standing on the shelves was Priest's "American Antiquities." Here you can see the copyright, with the seal of the clerk of the
16 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
Central District of New York attached certifying to the book, and as to the character of its contents. Here is the date when it was entered for a copyright, namely, March 21, 1833. It is a complete refutation of what Mr. Braden said, namely, that it was published nine years before that time.
And when we consider the Aztec tradition that fifteen heads of families were permitted to speak the same language, it is a remarkable thing. To me it is an evidence that there was a divine purpose in it, namely, to establish the truth. It is a great testimony as to the divine origin of the Book of Mormon. It matters not whether the Jaredites spoke the original language of the earth as it was before the confusion, the idea expressed in the book is that they prayed unto God that he would not confound their language, but that they might be permitted to understand each other.
We notice that the tradition of the Aztecs relates that fifteen heads of families were permitted to speak a common language. This word permitted conveys the idea that some one higher or greater than themselves gave them permission, and this is in harmony with the Book of Mormon statement which I have quoted. It is a remarkable coincidence, and a proof for the book that I do not think can be gainsaid.
If any in this congregation think this book is a fraud, solely the work of man, will they please to consider the improbability of the alleged authors of it having knowledge of this wonderful coincidence when the book was written. In 1827 to 1829 western New York and northern Ohio were thinly settled, and there were neither railways, telegraphs, city libraries, nor even private accumulations of books, there being so few publications of any kind in those days that people in our time can not realize that even the wealthy then had few books, and that poor families
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 17
and people in general; had only the Bible and two or three well-worn volumes. These facts, and the then limited communication between people, made it a real impossibility for Joseph Smith and his companions to have known of such evidences as we have referred to, even if they were then published.
If it is said that Baron Humboldt had previously issued his travels; yet think of the situation even then. History says that he landed in South America in 1799, went to Mexico in 1802, to Cuba in 1804, and returned to Europe in 1805. Also that the publication of his numerous volumes was begun in the French language in 1809 and not finished till 1825. We also learn that their publication in English was not begun until in 1846, when the celebrated publisher Bohn undertook the task. After 1830 they were published in German, Humboldt's native language, so I have read. But in whatever language issued their cost has been so great that sets of them even now can only be found in large public libraries or in the homes of the very wealthy. *
* At publication of this edition.
Some years after giving these lectures I learned that a brief synopsis of Humboldt's works was translated into English and published in London by a lady named Helen Maria Williams, and in seeking among encyclopedias and antiquarian books for proofs I found mention of it on page 265 of Priest's work, 1835 edition, which mention I had not seen before, not having read the book beyond the deluge traditions. But no date was given of its issue, and all search for it proved unavailing. And among all the authors only one or two even mentioned her work. At most it only proved that it was published by or before 1835 (or 1833), while the Book of Mormon was copyrighted in 1829. However, in 1898 Elder Heman C. Smith found a copy of her work in England and brought it to Lamoni, for the Church Library. The date of its publication is not given on its title-page; but on page 33 is given date of 1813 in Paris, which probably means something relating to its issuing in French, for the English issue was from London, whatever may have been the year. After a personal search of twenty-five years in city book-stores for antique works, this is the first copy I have seen. Other elders in the church have likewise searched, but have given no account of this work, which shows how very little it could have been known in America during these seventy years. There is no probability that it was known to Joseph Smith, or to other supposed authors of the Book of Mormon.
18 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
And how about any one by mere chance writing in a made-up work that a people came over here from Babel, and that by special permission they all spoke the same language from the time of their starting on the journey? And that without even the most remote probability that discovery would be made of traditions among two nations that certain families (their ancestors) were permitted to come to America speaking one language and locating in the very lands that the Book of Mormon plainly describes. I am convinced that God himself has created this to be a witness for his work, that the honest may see it, and that scoffers may have no excuse.
But many people innocently suppose that numerous books were in existence before 1830, from which it would have been comparatively easy for something to have been written as a work of fiction, just as Mr. Clark Braden boldly and falsely stated about the work of Josiah Priest. Desiring to know for myself how this was, I have either examined the books themselves or the encyclopedia accounts of them and their authors, and the result is that of over twenty chief writers upon American antiquities only one book is proven to have been published in the English language prior to the copyrighting of the Book of Mormon, and that is the work of Captain Del Rio, which was published in London in 1822. *
This work is also mentioned by Josiah Priest in his "American Antiquities," 1835 edition, page 246. It seems to be an account in particular of the ruined city called Palenque, otherwise Otolum. In connection with this Mr. Priest quotes from what he calls the "Family Magazine," for 1833, number 34, page 266, the following:
"Public attention bas been recently excited respecting the ruins of an ancient city found in Guatemala. It would
* Probably now two, with the work of Helen Maria Williams if hers was published before 1830.
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 19
seem that these ruins are now being explored, and much curious and valuable matter in a literary and historical point of view is anticipated. We deem the present a most auspicious moment, now that the public attention is turned to the subject, to spread its contents before our readers."
From this it appears that in 1833 an interest was just being awakened to these facts, that the learned and literary world was then beginning to know about them, not that they were generally known to the learned world before that, much less, therefore, were they known to a humble, poor, and an out of the way class on the American borders. I find no evidence that any other American writer mentioned Del Rio's work before Mr. Priest.
We examine other authors, historians, and writers of encyclopedias, and find no proof of any other book upon American antiquities being published in the English language until after the Book of Mormon was copyrighted, but several between 1830 and 1842.
Certainly the Spanish traveler, Palacios, was in Mexico and Central America in 1576, but his letters to the king of Spain were carried to Madrid, stored in the National Archives there and were not known to English or American readers until they were obtained by the Hon. E. G. Squier, translated into English by him, and published in 1860.
Captain Dupaix wrote a book in French while he was in Mexico early in this century, but revolution and civil war occurred in that land and his writings were placed in the Museum in Mexico. The result was that they were not published until 1834, and then only in French. That was five years after the Book of Mormon was copyrighted.
And so with other authors and their works, until it is proven how utterly impossible it was for any American to have obtained in 1829 such evidence as we have mentioned and will continue to give in favor of the Book of Mormon,
20 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
even had any one desired to deceive in this manner, with a work of this kind. For it is a book devoted entirely to moral and religious subjects and to the special dealings of Almighty God with races and nations. Its characteristics throughout are entirely opposite those commonly found in works of fiction. And it strongly denounces all deceit and lying, and every kind of folly. More than that, it teaches in the most solemn manner the great facts of the atonement of Christ and the purposed redemption of man, never departing from the earnest and serious manner that one would expect to find only in moral and religious works. It lifts up no man, but always exalts God the Creator and Christ the Redeemer; and, equally with the Bible, it presents the future reward of the just and the punishment of the unjust and the wicked.
The Book of Mormon claims that from the Tower of Babel the Lord led a people to this continent; that they traveled until they came to the great sea, and that they crossed the Pacific Ocean in barges, under the care and protection of God. Babel was about four hundred miles from the Persian Gulf, and from there they passed down the river Euphrates. The Book of Mormon (page 502) tells us of the starting as follows:
"And it came to pass that the brother of Jared did cry unto the Lord... And it came to pass that the Lord did hear the brother of Jared, and had compassion upon him, and said unto him, Go to and gather together thy flocks, both male and female, of every kind; and also the seed of the earth of every kind, and thy families; and also Jared thy brother and his family; and also thy friends and their families, and the friends of Jared and their families. And when thou hast done this, thou shalt go at the head of them down into the valley, which is northward. And there will I meet thee, and will go before thee into a land which is choice above all the land of the earth.
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 21
And there will I bless thee and thy seed, and raise up unto me of thy seed, and of the seed of thy brother, and they who shall go with thee, a great nation. And there shall be none greater than the nation which I will raise up unto me of thy seed, upon all the face of the earth. And thus I will do unto thee because this long time ye have cried unto me... And it came to pass that when they had come down into the valley of Nimrod, the Lord came down and talked with the brother of Jared; and he was in a cloud, and the brother of Jared saw him not. And it came to pass that the Lord commanded them that they should go forth into the wilderness, yea, into that quarter where there never had man been. And it came to pass that the Lord did go before them, and did talk with them as he stood in a cloud, and gave directions whither they should travel. And it did come to pass that they did travel in the wilderness, and did build barges, in which they did cross many waters, being directed continually by the hand of the Lord. And the Lord would not suffer that they should stop beyond the sea in the wilderness, but he would that they should come forth even unto the land of promise, which was choice above all other lands which the Lord God had preserved for a righteous people; and he had sworn in his wrath unto the brother of Jared, that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off when the fullness of his wrath should come upon them... And now I proceed with my record; for behold it came to pass that the Lord did bring Jared and his brethren forth even to that great sea which divideth the lands. And as they came to the sea, they pitched their tents; and they called the name of the place Moriancumer; and they dwelt in tents; and dwelt in tents upon the sea-shore for the space of four years." -- Ether 1:2-5, small edition.
22 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
Now these many waters spoken of were evidently the Persian Gulf, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean. The travelers were several years upon their journey, -- we do not know exactly how long, -- and the book says that they stayed four years upon the land when they reached the great sea that divides the continents. This place I believe, from the account of it, to have been the Malayan Peninsula, or else the island of Borneo, for this reason: In an atlas that contains what is called Mercator's Projection, you will see illustrated the great ocean currents. Also you may read of Lieutenant Maury's theory of the trade winds, which he demonstrated and published in 1856 or 1857. If our map here had upon it an illustration of the great rivers of the sea (as they are called), you would find that east of Borneo one of these currents sets across north of the Equator, directly towards Central America. See also Johnson's Encyclopedia, volume 2, page 341. You will discover that it is between ten and eleven thousand miles across, or nearly one half way around the earth. There are the great ocean currents and there blow the trade winds; and the book itself tells us that the Lord caused great winds to blow upon these barges, and thus they were driven day and night across the sea, and the time occupied was three hundred forty-four days, for this journey of ten or eleven thousand miles. I believe that the hand of God was with that people, and I believe also that he made use of those means which were originally provided by his law, as also that he used his special providence in their being carried over the sea.
Of the fact that boats are still carried across the Pacific to America by natural causes alone, Mr. Bancroft says:
"There have been a great many instances of Japanese junks drifting upon the American coast, many of them after having floated helplessly about for many months. Mr. Brooks gives forty-one particular instances of such
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 23
wrecks... A drifting wreck would be carried towards the American coast at an average rate of ten miles a day by this current." -- Native Races of the Pacific States, vol. 5, pp. 52, 53.
I will speak now upon the history given concerning the boats in which the Jaredites crossed the ocean. It is stated that, at the command of God, they built barges, eight in number, that they might pass over the sea. And there was a hole in the top and a hole in the bottom of each. They were commanded thus to make the hole in the top and the hole in the bottom, that at the top being for the letting in of air. And when the seas should dash over them, or become very tempestuous, they should close this lest they should be drowned. It has been discovered that the best way to build life-boats is to have a hole in the bottom, strange as it may seem, and thus are now built the safest boats of the United States Signal and Life Saving Service. They were on exhibition during the Columbian Exposition last year, in Chicago, and they may be seen at our naval stations at any time. There are holes in the bottom because they are made double-bottomed, and the space between is an air-tight and water-tight compartment. This makes them light and buoyant to rise above the water. There are holes right down through like a tube. The boats are always on top of the waters if it is possible to be there; and, when waves go over them, they rise quickly, and the water in them goes down through the tubular holes into the sea. This is a method by which they are cleared of water, and they come to the top because the water can pass out of them again so quickly.
And the barges of the Jaredites were roofed over tightly, being, as the book says, "tight like unto a dish." Evidently there was a hole in the cover, or top, that let in air, and this might be open the most of the time, when
24 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
they were passing peacefully over the sea; but when there was rain or storm this hole was closed. Nor, with our present knowledge, is it remarkable that such should have been the case. But how could men have imagined such a theory at the time (1827 to 1829) when the Book of Mormon was translated, or, if we go back to the days when Solomon Spalding lived (1812 to 1816), could he or any one else have imagined such an idea as that? Or could any writer of fiction in that day have thought of putting such a ridiculous statement in any book to be palmed off upon the world as the truth? Would any one have imagined such nonsense as that? Yet now the safest boats in the world are that kind.
There is a great deal said by our opponents in relation to the Book of Mormon being ungrammatical, and about the misconstruction of many sentences, such as the "more part of the people," or something of that kind. Yet the origin of the work is ascribed to Solomon Spalding, and he is said to have been an educated man, a graduate of Dartmouth College. If he were really an educated man it is absurd to think of his putting such crude statements in the book, or such historical matter as neither he nor any one else could have thought of writing at that time, like the story of the hole in the bottom of the boat to prevent the people from being drowned; or about the language of the people not being confused, and those who journeyed together to America being permitted to speak the same language. I repeat it, we can not believe that it was possible for any one to have written such absurd ideas as these. These things would have to be explained before we could accept the thought that the book may be a fraud.
I close this first lecture by inviting all who are interested in this subject and in God's work to continue to hear and consider the testimony and see what further evidence there may be; and I trust that you will remember me in prayer,
BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES. 25
both to-night and hereafter, that there may be brought out that truth which is necessary to establish the divinity of God's word, wherever it is found...
(pages 25-45 not yet transcribed)
46 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
that they were the Jaredites and the Nephites, just as the Book of Mormon tells us they were?
I might have brought further evidence upon the point of geography, but think I have presented enough to show that the Book of Mormon describes the very land that I have mentioned. The book says that when the Jaredites landed they bowed before the Lord and gave thanks to him for the preservation of their lives during the three hundred and forty-four days spent upon the sea, directed and protected by the power of God in the journey across the great waters, a distance of more than ten thousand miles, as your geographies will show it to be. They bowed before God; they gave him thanks, and for a period of time they lived justly, walked uprightly, and they prospered and became a great and a wealthy people. But this I will try to take up and consider more thoroughly to-morrow night.
[ 47 ]
For two evenings we have considered the subject of the Jaredite movement from Asia to America, which occurred over twenty-two hundred years before the birth of Christ, or immediately after the confusion of the original language that succeeded the voyage of Noah in the ark. I would like to finish this portion of the lectures before dwelling upon the history of the colony that journeyed from Jerusalem more than sixteen hundred years after the Jaredite colony came, and I would like to close this part to-night, if possible.
To-day a brother said he would like it if the boat plan were made more clear to him. Therefore a pencil sketch has been prepared by Bro. Mills as an idea of what we believe was the form of the Jaredite boats; therefore I will speak of this again before continuing to other matters. We understand, from the description given in the book, that these boats were made in some such form as this: (Here Elder Stebbins pointed to a drawing of a barge-shaped boat.) Perhaps the Jaredites made their barges more pointed at the ends than this sketch gives the idea. However, it is said of them that their shape was such, and their build, that, after having been submerged in the water by the force of the storms, the water rolled off them readily, and that they were "tight like unto a dish." A11 things considered, and with the methods of boat building in our time, I believe that this sketch is something near the form of the Jaredite construction. In my mind it has always so appeared when thinking of them.
And in relation to what is said about a hole in the bottom and a hole in the top, to me it is plain enough, and I wish it were so to all of you. Let us think! We take a
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66 BOOK OF MORMON LECTURES.
cities of Central America were unknown until after the Book of Mormon was published, nor is there reason to believe that any one comprehended their great antiquity, still less had the few who had seen them investigated sufficiently to gain the idea of there having been two special and distinct periods of occupancy, by races of different characteristics and methods. This proof remained to come forth by later and more careful explorers, on both points.
It may be as well here to give the dates when the chief books upon American antiquities were published, so that all hearers and readers may be informed as to the facts which we gather either from their title-pages or from cyclopedias, as follows:
1. In our first lecture was presented the main facts about the works of Baron Humboldt. We find further in the American Encyclopedia, article Humboldt, the statement that his works were published in French at Paris beginning 1809 and ending 1825, also that they were translated into German and published at Stuttgart 1825 to 1832. As a complete work it was not begun in English till 1845 by Bohn in London.
2. The short abridgment of Humboldt by Helen Maria Williams we have also spoken of, but the date of its publication in London we have not yet seen, the copy brought to Lamoni not giving it, neither on the title-page nor in the preface. That there ever was an American edition of it seems doubtful. Johnson's Encyclopedia, volume 8, page 563, says that she lived in Berwick, England, and that she translated Humboldt's "Personal Narrative" between 1814 and 1829, nothing said about the year of publication, but it is evident by Priest's mention, 5th edition, page 255, that he had seen it by 1838, that being the earliest that we have found in any American mention. In fact we do not know where to find mention of her work
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outside of Priest. Bancroft, who quotes scores of books and manuscripts in English, French, Spanish, and other languages; and writing at so late a time (published l875), having advantage of all preceding writers, being also able to read in the foreign languages, even he does not (that I discover) mention Helen M. Williams' work, nor do Baldwin, Squier, Foster, Short, Prescott, Haines, nor any other writers on American antiquities, so far as I have read.
3. As previously shown, the first issue of Priest's "American Antiquities" was in 1833. It appears that he published a book in 1824 or 1825 about the wonders of earth and heaven, and that in it he gave the theories of Rev. Ethan Smith, Dr. Boudinot, and others that the Indians of America were of Hebrew origin. But it was not a book about antiquarian ruins and relics.
4. Palacios we also mentioned in the first lecture. Of him Mr. Baldwin says:
"Palacios, who described Copan in 1576, may properly be called the first explorer." -- Ancient America, p. 102.
On page 79 of volume 4 Mr. Bancroft says that Palacios wrote the result of his observations to the king of Spain, "which document," says Bancroft, "is preserved in the celebrated Munoz collection of MSS.," that is in the city of Madrid. Mr. Bancroft states, so also the American Encyclopedia (article Squier), that an English translation was made by the Hon. E. G. Squier in the year 1860. Therefore it was of no use to the writers of the Book of Mormon in 1827 to 1829.
6. Captain Del Rio has been named as visiting Palenque as early as 1787. The uselessness of this work before 1830 we prove from the writings of Mr. J. L. Stephens, who in 1810 explored the ruins. He says:
"The report of Captain Del Rio... through either the supineness or the jealousy of the Spanish government was
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locked up in the archives of Guatemala until the time of the Revolution, when, by the operation of liberal principles, the original manuscripts came into the hands of an English gentleman... and an English translation was published at London in 1822. This was the first notice in Europe of the discovery of these ruins; and, instead of electrifying the public mind,... so little notice was taken of it, that in 1831 the Literary Gazette, a paper of great circulation in London, announced it as a new discovery." -- Central America, Chiapas, and Yucatan, vol. 2, p. 296.
Therefore how impossible it was for any person to have made use of Del Rio's work in fabricating the Book of Mormon. For the latter was copyrighted two years before the former began to be known among the wealthy and learned in Europe, the men who were using their time and abundant means to discover something new in ancient lore. In lecture one I stated what Mr. Priest wrote of Del Rio in 1833, or 1835. But I add now further of his statements about what was then known of Otolum or Palenque, there being two names to these ruins. Priest writes as follows:
"Let it be understood, this city of Otolum, the ruins of which are so immense, is in North, not South America, in the same latitude with the island Jamaica.... The discovery of these ruins, and also of many others, equally wonderful in the same country, are just commencing to arouse the attention of the schools of Europe, who hitherto have denied that America could boast of her antiquities. But these immense ruins are now being explored under the direction of scientific persons, a history of which, in detail, will be forthcoming, doubtless, in due time." -- American Antiquities, edition 1835, p. 247.
How much the above means in relation to knowledge that was not had by the world prior to 1830! If not had
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among the learned, how much less in the hands of an unlearned young man, or in the possession of any one else who has been charged as a partner in writing a fraudulent book!
6. We again mention Captain Dupaix, quoting from Baldwin and Stephens to show that this author was not published until after 1830. Mr. Baldwin states about Dupaix at Palenque as follows:
"Captain Dupaix's folios, in French, with the drawings of Castenada contain the first really important memoir on these ruins. It was prepared in 1807, detained in Mexico during the Mexican Revolution, and finally published at Paris in 1834 and 1835." -- Ancient America, p. 102.
Mr. John L. Stephens says of Dupaix and his writings:
"While the report and drawings of Del Rio slept in the archives of Guatemala, Charles the Fourth of Spain ordered another expedition, at the head of which was placed Captain Dupaix.... His expeditions were made in 1805, 1806, 1807, the last of which was to Palenque. The manuscripts of Dupaix, and the designs of his draughtsman Casteñada, were about to be sent to Madrid, which was then occupied by the French army, when the revolution broke out in Mexico; they then became an object of secondary importance, and remained during the wars of independence under the control of Casteñada, who deposited them in the Cabinet of Natural History in Mexico.... And the work of Dupaix was not published until 1834, 1835, when it was brought out in Paris." -- Central America, Chiapas, and Yucatan, vol. 2, pp. 296, 297.
According to Professor Baldwin, the work of Dupaix was the first description of the ruins of Palenque that was of real value. He says "the first really important" one, and it was issued five years after the Book of Mormon, and then in French only.
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Compare the foregoing evidences with the unwarranted assertion that we "ignore the fact that it (Palenque) was discovered about the middle of the sixteenth century, too early by nearly two centuries to be revealed by the Book of Mormon." We do not ignore it, but we do deny that the knowledge of the discovery came to the world in the sixteenth century, or even until well along in the nineteenth century.
7. We next mention Siguenza and his writings. He was a professor of astronomy and mathematics in Mexico about 1680, and he wrote (as modern investigation proves) several treatises on Mexican history and her ruins. But they were in Spanish, and modern historians say that they have been read very little even in Mexico, and are rarely to be seen. In very recent times the learned in various languages, such men as Bancroft, have read them to see what Siguenza did write. Bancroft has read all that Spanish writers have said upon these subjects, and in 1875 he published the results in his five octavo volumes.
8. What of Catherwood and Stephens? History relates that they sailed from New York on their first trip to Central America on October 3, 1839, and they began their explorations at Uxmal early in 1840. Mr. Stephens returned to New York in July, 1840, and their first book was issued in 1841. Mr. Stephens sailed again October 9, 1841, and remained in Yucatan till June, 1842. Other works were published by them in 1843, 1844. So says Bancroft in Native Races, volume 4, pages 145, 146.
As to the time when the ruined cities were explored, Mr. Bancroft says of Stephens and other explorers, as follows:
"Since 1830 the veil has been lifted from the principal ruins of ancient Maya works by the researches of Zavala, Waldeck, Stephens, Catherwood, Norman, Friederichsthal, and Charnay. A general account of the antiquarian
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explorations and writings of these gentlemen is given in the appended note.... It will be noticed that all the authors mentioned who write from actual observation, have confined their observations to from one to four of the principal ruins, whose existence was known previous to their visits, excepting Messrs. Stephens and Catherwood. These gentlemen boldly left the beaten track and brought to the knowledge of the world about forty ruined cities whose very existence had been previously unknown even to the residents of the larger cities of the very state in whose territory they lie. With a force of natives to aid in clearing away the forest, Mr. Stephens spent ten months in surveying, and Mr. Catherwood in sketching... the various groups of ruined structures. " -- Native Races, vol. 4, pp. 144-146.
"Stephens' account was noticed, with quotations, by nearly all the reviews at the time of its appearance, and has been the chief source from which all subsequent writers, including myself, have drawn their information." -- Native Races, vol. 4, footnote on p. 146.
It seems a remarkable, perhaps a providential, coincidence, that the facts compelled him to mention 1830 as the starting point in the coming forth of knowledge concerning the ruins in the region which is so important to the believer in the divine authenticity of the book we are talking about. It seems that the Lord has left the world without a real refuge in their attempts to prove the book a false one.
Of Mr. Stephens' work at the ruins called Copan, Mr. Bancroft writes thus:
"For what is known of Copan the world is indebted almost entirely to the works of the American traveler, Mr. John L. Stephens, and of his most skillful artist companion, Mr. F. Catherwood; and from the works of these gentlemen, with the slight notes to be gleaned from other
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sources, I proceed to give all that is known of what is commonly termed the oldest city on the American Continent." -- Native Races, vol. 4, pp. 81, 82.
9. Of those mentioned above by Bancroft we consider Zavala. Mr. Bancroft says, volume 4, pages 144, 145, that the earliest modern account with which he is acquainted is that written by Lorenzo de Zavala, ambassador to France from the Mexican government, that he visited Uxmal several years before 1834 and then issued a work concerning one city only, and unaccompanied by drawings, though Mr. Bancroft says that it gave "a tolerably good general idea of the ruins."
10. Waldeck, according to Mr. Bancroft, visited Uxmal in 1835, and published his account in Paris in 1838. And Mr. Bancroft quotes Stephens as remarking of Waldeck that, "he is justly entitled to the full credit of being the first stranger who visited these ruins and brought them to the notice of the public," meaning the ruins of Uxmal. See Native Races, volume 4, pages 145, 150.
11. B. M. Norman, author of "Rambles in Yucatan," is mentioned by Mr. Bancroft, and he says that Norman's work was published in New York in 1843. See Native Races, volume 4, page 146.
12. Baron Friederichsthal's work was published in Paris, 1841, says Bancroft in volume 4, page 143.
13. Charnay, also mentioned by Bancroft in volume 4, page 144. He says that Charnay's first work was published in France in 1863, and we know that the latest was in 1884, but first in America by Harper Brothers in 1887, called "Ancient Cities of the New World."
14. As previously stated, the valuable volumes of Mr. Bancroft were issued in 1875. It is a very exhaustive work, by reason of the thousands of references and quotations made by him.
15. Some may suppose that Brasseur de Bourbourg,
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who is largely quoted by Bancroft and Baldwin, was an ancient Spanish writer But he did not begin his explorations until 1848, and his "History of Civilization in Mexico and Central America" was not published until 1857, and then only in the French language.
16. Delafield's valuable work, "Antiquities of America," was issued simultaneously in London, Paris, and New York in 1839.
17. Hon. E. G. Squier published his works upon "Antiquities in the United States" in 1848 to 1851, his "Nicaragua" in 1852, and his "Notes on Central America" in 1854, none previous to 1848.
18. The celebrated geologist and archaeologist, Prof. J. W. Foster, published his first volume on antiquities, entitled, "The Mississippi Valley," in 1869, while his "Prehistoric Races in the United States" was not issued until 1873.
19. Lord Kingsborough, whose writings are largely quoted by the historian Bancroft and other writers, should have been mentioned earlier in this list. His nine large volumes, entitled, "Mexican Antiquities," had their beginning in 1830, the first sheets being in press then. But the work was not completed until after 1840, and they have never been seen in any but the largest libraries. I was informed by a student of ancient lore in Kansas City that these volumes with colored plates, were valued at $875 for the set, and with plain plates at $550. Elder S. F. Walker visited the Cincinnati Exposition about ten years ago, largely for the purpose of getting a sight of them and making extracts for his use and for publication in Autumn Leaves.
20. Prof. J. D. Baldwin's much read and largely quoted book,- "Ancient America," was published in 1872. It is chiefly valuable as being a brief digest of the main points by all the leading writers upon antiquities.
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21. Hon. Ignatius Donnelly's "Atlantis" was issued in 1882.
22. John T. Short's well-known work, "The North Americans of Antiquity," was also published in 1882.
23. H. H. Brownell's "New World" was published in 1857. His "Indian Races" is mentioned by Mr. Bancroft, but he does not give date of publication. (Vol. 4, p. 80.)
24. Taking up the Peruvian antiquities and when knowledge of them came to be had in Europe and America, we find that Montesinos is largely quoted by Baldwin because he was early in Peru and made a special study of these matters. But what of him, and when did he write, and when did the English-speaking world first learn about him?
Baldwin, on pages 261 to 263 of "Ancient America," says that Ferdinand Montesinos was a "scholar and a worker," that he had "the best possible opportunities for observation," and that no one exceeded him in archaeological knowledge of Peru. He was sent by the king of Spain to Peru in 1630. But his two manuscripts, "Memorias Antiguas Historales del Peru," and his "Annales" remained in the archives at Madrid, and only the former has yet been published, and that in the French language, after being translated from the Spanish by M. Ternaux-Compans, as shown by Baldwin on pages 263, 264. It is now only known to the learned, those who can read French. I have read that it was issued about 1840, but do not know the exact year.
25. We next consider the works of W. H. Prescott, the widely known historian, and we find that his "Conquest of Mexico" was published in 1843 and his "Conquest of Peru" in 1847. In his preface to the latter work, dated April 2, 1847, he states that from Spain he gathered his material, and thus he writes:
"The larger part of the documents, in both cases, was
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obtained from the same great repository, -- the archives of the Royal Academy of History at Madrid."
Thus it would appear that he was given advantages that no other that we have read of has received, and his books are very valuable. Referring to the advantages that came to him, he speaks of the great collection of material by Munoz, the eminent scholar, who intended to publish a thorough history from the manuscripts, but who died before he could accomplish it, and Prescott says that the portion of the Munoz manuscripts "which had reference to Mexico and Peru were destined to serve the uses of another, an inhabitant of that new world to which they related," meaning himself. So late came the chief source of information to the American public concerning the ancient civilization of Peru, outside of what was known about Humboldt's discoveries.
26. "Peru, the Land of the Incas," is another valuable work about that ancient country, by the Hon. E. G. Squier, but it was not published until 1876 and 1877. He was sent as a United States Commissioner to Peru in 1863, and while there he gathered the material that he used in the above work. He and Mr. Prescott have given to the world the chief information about Peru and her ancient peoples.
27. Another work on South America and its ruins in one by Bollaert, called "Antiquarian Researches in New Granada," which Bancroft states in volume 4, page 16, was published in London in 1860.
28. Further upon the Mexican and Central American ruins, I find that Pimm and Seemann's "Dottings in Panama and Nicaragua" were published in 1869; so says Johnson's Encyclopedia, article "Seemann. " Bancroft refers to their work in his volume 4, pages 16, 20, and 58.
29. Wagner and Scherzer traveled in Costa Rica in 1853 and 1854, and soon after issued a book account.
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30. The Spaniard, Colonel Juan Galindo, is said by Bancroft (volume 4, page 80) to have visited that land in 1835, and the Literary Gazette of London published his account.
31. Mayer's works on Mexican and Aztec antiquities were issued somewhere along between 1844 and 1851, so shown by Johnson.
32. Bradford's "American Antiquities" must have been published later than 1835, because Bancroft says that Bradford quotes Galindo, who was not there till 1835. See Bancroft, volume I, pages 80 and 96.
Many names of lesser note might be given, but all their investigations were made since 1830, the most of them since 1860, and, having given the dates of thirty-two works issued by chief explorers, it seems that sufficient has been presented against the popular idea that the writers of the Book of Mormon could have had access to all they had need of as a basis for their fiction. There is no reason to believe that Joseph Smith or his fellows had ever seen even one book upon the subject of the Central American, Mexican, or Peruvian ruins, yet he or they translated a book that clearly locates the ancient people of which it tells in the very regions of North and South America where discoveries since 1830 declare that such people and nations really did dwell, and migrating north as the book also clearly shows.
Last night I read that the "Land Desolation," where the greatest civilization is said to have flourished, was directly north of what is now called the Isthmus of Panama. This isthmus is repeatedly described in the Book of Mormon as the "neck of land" or the "narrow pass" that was between the south land (where the Nephites dwelt for five hundred years) and the north land. See pages 268, 340, 345, 387, 486, and 520 of the small edition of that book. Where the line was drawn between the Nephite land that they termed
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"Bountiful" and the Jaredite land, which the Nephites on discovering it called "Desolation," it is said to have been "a day and a half's journey for a Nephite... from the east sea to the west sea." Hence there can be no doubt as to the location of the old Jaredite civilization. Further south it is said to have been "a day's journey" across. That was probably about the present Gulf of San Miguel, where modern measure says it is thirty miles between the seas.
Therefore, after years of exploration, men inform the world that in former ages a great civilization had place in the very regions that the Book of Mormon describes, and that in Central America and Mexico there were two periods (at least), and that the second colony migrated there from South America. This is another wonderful coincidence, and its importance is great. No one can explain it upon human lines alone, nor can he do away with the logic that has such mighty testimony.
But what does this book say of the civilization of the Jaredites? It tells us that they tilled the soil, and they prospered just as long as they did right. It states that they began to have kings after Jared died; some were righteous, and under them the nation was built up, but when wicked kings ruled, the people became divided and suffered, and there was brought upon them trouble and destruction just as had been prophesied should be, that no king should rule and prosper to do unrighteousness. Secret combinations were instituted among them. And there is another point that I wish to bring to your attention.
This book says there were secret societies, to murder, to get gain, and for corrupt and evil purposes. Now, Le Plongeon, in his "Sacred Mysteries of the Mayas," endeavors to demonstrate that the first secret societies of the world had their beginning among the ancient
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[ 233 ]
One of the important teachings found in the Book of Mormon, and which necessarily has attracted a great deal of attention, and has caused a great deal of gladness to the believer, as well as brought about a great deal of criticism by the unbeliever, has been the statement of the Book of Mormon that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, visited the American Continent and made himself known to the Nephites.
In Governor Thomas Ford's "History of Illinois," page 252, it is said that the Book of Mormon claims that our Savior came to this continent "and was crucified here nearly in the same manner in which he was crucified in Jerusalem." Another falsehood upon the same page is that the book gives "the history of the ten lost tribes of Israel in their wanderings through Asia into America."
But an hour's reading of the book will convince any one that both of these statements are false; for in no place does the book claim to be a history of the ten lost tribes, or of any fragment of them. And, instead of teaching that Christ was crucified here, it simply states that Christ visited the people upon this continent after his resurrection. And that is a very reasonable statement, considering the prophets declared that the land of Joseph should be a choice dwelling-place for the descendants of Joseph, one of the choicest, if not the very choicest land of all the earth, if we may believe the book, and also our own experiences and observations.
After the great disturbances that we read of last eve ing, after the great convulsions and commotions, after all the calamities that the Book of Mormon and science unite in declaring took place in Central and Northern South
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America, after these events there came to the inhabitants of those lands peace and light once more. And the statement is made that a large company who were assembled, after the desolation was past, heard a voice from above that said to them:
"Behold, my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, in whom I have glorified my name, hear ye him. And it came to pass as they understood, they cast their eyes up again towards heaven -- and behold, they saw a man descending out of heaven; and he was clothed in a white robe, and he came down and stood in the midst of them, and the eyes of the whole multitude were turned upon him, and they durst Dot open their mouths, even one to another, and wist not what it meant, for they thought it was an angel that had appeared unto them. And it came to pass that he stretched forth his hand, and spake unto the people, saying, Behold I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world: and behold I am the light and the life of the world, and I have drunk out of that bitter cup which the Father hath given me, and have glorified the Father in taking upon me the sins of the world, in the which I have suffered the will of the Father in all things, from the beginning." -- Nephi 5: 2-4, small edition.
Thus beginning, he preached to them his doctrine, the principles of life and salvation, identical, so far as the fact or substance is concerned, with those found in the New Testament scripture, and, to a great degree, in the same language that he spoke to the people in the land of Palestine. He made declarations that the people here were the ones referred to in John 10:16, where he told his Jewish disciples that he bad "other sheep" which were not of that fold (in Palestine) -- that he must visit those other sheep, and they should hear his voice, and there should yet be "one fold and one shepherd."
So to-night I wish to bring, some evidences (lack of time
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prevents that I should read all) to prove that the people who anciently lived in America were of Hebrew origin, and that they understood the atonement and the necessity of Christ's crucifixion.
I have before spoken of the saying of Christ, "Other sheep I have which are not of this fold, and of his promise that he would visit them and that they should hear his voice, to the intent that there should be "one fold and one shepherd." -- See John 10:16.
While in Palestine Christ made another declaration that has a bearing upon this matter, namely, that he was "not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." And there is no history, that I am aware of, that Christ ever preached to any that are called Gentiles, but all his personal ministrations appear to have been among the Jews, except perhaps a case or two of healing. Not only were all the old prophets Israelites, but also from that race did Christ choose all his apostles and ministers, under the same idea, "I am not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."
As some of those sheep of Israel were upon this continent I will give the Savior's own interpretation of his declaration that he had other sheep which were not of that fold, whom he must visit, and who should hear his voice. The words are those which he spoke upon the occasion of his appearing to the Nephites, as already mentioned. He said:
"And verily, I say unto you again, that the other tribes hath the Father separated from them; and it is because of their iniquity, that they know not of them. And verily, I say unto you, that ye are they of whom I said, Other sheep I have which are not of this fold, them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd. And they understood me not, for they supposed it had been the Gentiles; for they
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understood not that the Gentiles should be converted through their preaching; and they understood me not that I said they shall hear my voice; and they understood me not that the Gentiles should not at any time hear my voice; that I should not manifest myself unto them, save it were by the Holy Ghost. But behold, ye have both heard my voice, and seen me, and ye are my sheep, and ye are numbered among those whom the Father hath given me." -- Nephi 7:2, small edition.
The foregoing words are those spoken by Christ to the people on this land when he appeared and taught them that he had been crucified for the sins of the world, bad been lifted upon the cross, as their fathers and their prophets had long before prophesied, and that the three days of darkness just passed were the days of his agony and his lying in the tomb.
As this subject is of considerable importance, and I trust also interesting, I will read you valuable outside evidence that the cross, the crucifixion, and evidently the atonement, were understood by the ancients of America. I first present the statements of Professor Baldwin, the Hon. Ignatius Donnelly, and the Hon. H. H. Bancroft, as follows:
"The cross is one of the most common emblems present in all the ruins. This led the Catholic missionaries to assume that knowledge of Christianity had been brought to that part of America long before their arrival." -- Ancient America, p. 109.
"When the Spanish missionaries first set foot upon the soil of America, in the fifteenth century, they were amazed to find the cross was as devoutly worshiped by the red Indians as by themselves, and were in doubt whether to ascribe the fact to the pious labors of St. Thomas or to the cunning device of the Evil One. The
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hallowed symbol challenged their attention on every hand." -- Atlantis, pp. 319, 320.
"The island of Cozumel was especially devoted to religious observances, and was annually visited by great numbers of pilgrims; there were therefore more religious edifices here than elsewhere. Among them is mentioned a square tower, with four windows and hollow at the top; at the back was a room in which the sacred implements were kept; it was surrounded by an enclosure, in the middle of which stood a cross nine feet high." -- Native Races, vol. 2, pp. 792, 793.
"In a tablet on the wall of a room at Palenque is a cross surmounted by a bird." -- Native Races, vol. 3, p. 135.
"One of the most remarkable emblems of Maya worship in the estimation of the conquerors, was the cross, which has also been noticed in other parts of Central America and in Mexico." -- Native Races, vol. 3, pp. 467, 468.
Then we find still more in Lord Kingsborough's testimonies upon the same point. And for the succeeding extracts from Kingsborough's extensive and costly volumes I am indebted to Elder S. F. Walker, now deceased. He went from Lamoni, Iowa. to the Cincinnati Exposition in 1888 for the purpose of seeing this work, for, although it was published in 1830, its value is several hundred dollars per set, therefore it can not be seen by ordinary people without a special effort. But it was on exhibition then and Elder Walker was permitted to copy such items as he might choose. Some of these were published in 1889 in Autumn Leaves, at Lamoni, Iowa, and the following quotations are taken from pages 178, 179, 180, 181, 263, and 264 of volume two of that magazine:
"Torquemada says the Bishop of Chiapa, when he passed through Yucatan, sent his ecclesiastic to the interior of of the country, who at the end of a year wrote to him that he had questioned a principal lord about the ancient
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religion, who informed him that they knew and believed in God, who resided in heaven and that their God was the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; that the Son was called Bacab , who was born of a virgin named Chibirias, who was in heaven with God, and that the name of the mother of Chibirias was Oschil; and that the Holy Ghost was called Echuah. Bacab, the Son, they said, was put to death by Eopuco, who scourged him and put a crown of thorns upon his head, and placed him with his arms stretched upon a beam of wood, to which they believed he bad not been nailed, but tied, and that he died there, and remained during three days dead, and the third day came to life and ascended to heaven, where be is with the Father; and immediately afterward Echuah coming, who is the Holy Ghost, tilled the earth with whatever it stood in need of." -- Mexican Antiquities, vol. 6, p. 141.
"Amongst the many arguments which might be brought forward to show that Christianity had in very early ages extended itself to America, one of the strongest and most convincing is the fact that the doctrine of the Trinity was known in Peru, New Spain, and Yucatan. This fact rests on the authority of very respectable writers. Acosta, in his Natural and Moral History of the Indies, distinctly asserts it; and the celebrated Las Casas, bishop of Chiapa, as cited by Torquemada, says that he had heard it from a person worthy of credit whom he charged to make inquiries into the religion of the inhabitants of the peninsula of Yucatan. A distinguished writer, also, of the present age, the Baron De Humboldt, says that the Muyscas, the ancient inhabitants of Bogota, likewise believe in the existence of a Trinity." -- Ibid., p. 158.
De Salcar says: "The chiefs and men of rank in the province of Chiapa were acquainted with the doctrine of the most holy Trinity. They called the Father Icona, the Son Bacab, and the Holy Ghost Estruach, and certainly
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these names resemble the Hebrew, especially Estruach that of the Holy Ghost does, for Ruach in Hebrew is the Holy Ghost.
"As in the tradition current in Yucatan of Bacab and his crucifixion.... so in these Mexican paintings many analogies may be traced between the events to which they evidently relate and the history of the crucifixion of Christ as contained in the New Testament. The subject of them all is the same, -- the death of Quecalcoatle upon the cross, as an atonement for the sins of mankind. In the fourth page of the Borgian manuscript, he seems to be crucified between two persons who are in the act of reviling him; who hold as it would appear balters in their hands, the symbols perhaps of some crime for which they were themselves going to suffer." -- Ibid., p. 166.
"If more of the historical paintings and monuments of Yucatan had been preserved, we should probably have been able to have determined whether Bacab and Quecalcoatle were only two different names for the same deity, who was worshiped alike by the Mexicans and the people of Yucatan. Torquemada informs us, on the authority of Las Casas, that Quecalcoatle had been in Yucatan, and was there adored. The interpreter of the Vatican Codex says, in the following curious passage, that the Mexicans had a tradition that he like Bacab, died upon the cross, and he seems to add, according to their belief, for the sins of mankind. This tradition which rested solely upon the authority of the anonymous interpreter of that manuscript, acquires the most authentic character from the corroboration which it receives from several paintings in the Codex Borgianus which actually represent Quecalcoatle crucified and nailed to the cross. These paintings are contained in the fourth, seventy-second, seventy-third, and seventy-fifth pages of the above-mentioned manuscript; the article of his resurrection, burial, and descent
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into bell appears also to be represented in seventy-first and seventy-third pages of the same." -- Ibid., p. 165.
Elder Walker also quotes from pace 166 of volume 6 that on the seventy-second page of the Borgian manuscript "Quecalcoatle is there painted in the attitude of a person crucified, with the impression of nails both in his hand and feet, but not actually upon a cross." It is here said that his body "seems to be formed out of a resplendent sun." On the seventy-fifth page of the Borgian Manuscript he "is again represented as crucified, and one of his hands and both his feet seem to bear the impression of nails; he appears from the phonetic symbol placed near his mouth, to be uttering an exclamation, and his body is strangely covered with suns. If the Jews had wished to apply to their Messiah the metaphor of the Sun of Righteousness, they would have perhaps painted him with such emblems."
From page 168 of Kingsborough's sixth volume, Elder Walker quotes as follows:
"Both a fan and sickle were sometimes placed in the hand of Quecalcoatle, as would appear from a bust which is preserved in the British Museum, the countenance of which is mutilated, though not deformed, and the curve of the sickle in the right hand broken off."
We can see the meaning of the fan and the sickle, for it is written of Christ, "Whose fan is in his hand;" and when he shall come again he shall come with the sickle, as shown in Revelation 14:14-19, where it is said: "Upon the cloud sat one like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown and in his hand a sharp sickle." So the character and work of Christ were illustrated in painting by the ancient Americans, first to fan away the chaff, as John the Baptist said, and second when he shall come with his sickle to gather the final harvest, as John the Revelator foresaw. "And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his
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sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped." -- Rev. 14:16.
Here are the two implements, the fan and the sickle, spoken of in the New Testament scriptures, concerning the great periods of the first and second comings of the great Redeemer and King, both known to the ancient Americans.
Lord Kingsborough continues:
"Mons. Dupaix discovered in the province of Tlascala, which bordered on Cholula, a bust which so exactly corresponds with the description given by Herrera of the image of Quecalcoatle, which was adored in that city, that we can not refrain from referring to the Fifty-third Plate of the Second Part of his monuments, which contains a representation of it under the number 123.... It deserves to be remarked, that both of the hands of the figure seemed to be pierced with nails, the heads of which are invisible. The tradition current in Yucatan that Eopuco crowned Bacab with thorns appears also to be preserved in its head-dress. A crown of thorns of another fashion may perhaps be recognized on the head of another piece of ancient sculpture discovered by Mons. Dupaix. This figure, in relievo, is represented in the Ninth Plate of his Monuments, Part Third, Number Thirteen; and the crown seems to be formed out of the thorny leaves of the aloe." -- Mexican Antiquities, vol. 7, p. 169.
When we read of these evidences we see the very character and work of Jesus Christ, and also his suffering, presented to us. There is much upon this point if time permitted to read it, but having the statement given to us that one of the most common emblems found in the New World was the cross, we have abundant reason to understand that the ancients on this land did indeed comprehend the crucifixion of Christ and the object of it.
Chartiay, page 214, states as follows:
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"Don Rodriguez, a Government Inspector of Mines, has lately had the central stone cross which stood in the temple bearing the same name at Palenque, brought here. This tablet, now so well known, has had a checkered existence. Some thirty years ago, it was taken from its place, and left lying in a forest adjoining the town by the thief, who was unable to carry it further. It was unbroken in 1858, when I found it covered with moss, and took a rather good photograph." -- Ancient Cities of the New World, p. 214.
He writes more about it, and gives a drawing of this interesting relic. He adds:
"Since the cross was a symbol of Tlaloc, the temple in which it stood must have been dedicated to him, and perhaps Quetzalcoatl also." Tlaloc was the father and Quetzalcoatl was the Son, in their religion.
On page 252, M. Charnay writes further of the cross: "In our cut of the Temple of the Cross, No. 2, three distinct subjects are seen: in the central slab is a cross, branching out with palms supporting two figures; the body of the cross, which rests on a hideous head, is sculptured in the center, and at the upper end are two human figures, crowned by a symbolic bird having a long tail and eagle claws. The left slab represents a man richly habited, with collar, medallion, girdle, and greaves; the right slab a woman, to judge from her size, long plait of hair, and peculiar clothing. This female is borne on palms having the very well preserved outline of human heads. Both the male and the female seem to stand before the symbolic bird offering presents, the nature of which it is not easy to specify. To the rear of each device is an inscription of sixty-eight characters, doubtless explanatory of the ceremony the whole sculpture represents, but which no one has yet been able to read. We are of the opinion that the Temple of the Cross No. 1 was a sanctuary consecrated to Tlaloc and Quetzalcoatl, and that the
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altar in the same Temple No. 2 was dedicated to Tlaloc; our only ground for this belief, however, is the cross." -- Ancient Cities of the New World, p. 252.
Also on page 449 he presents another engraving, or facsimile of the cross, as shown in the book, and he says: "They are of different size, and represent probably a man and a woman performing a religious ceremony; the taller holds in each hand a Latin cross, while the other carries but one in the right hand." -- Ancient Cities of the New World, pp. 448, 449.
We esteem these evidences as very weighty in their character. How did the people of Central America or Mexico have so clear an understanding of the fact of a crucified Redeemer, unless the Book of Mormon tells the truth about their origin and God's care over them? There is something more than a coincidence in this; the Book of Mormon alone solves the question about these matters. The Spaniards were astonished to find the cross as one of the most common emblems throughout that region of country, and no wonder. But this outside evidence was not known until after the Book of Mormon had been copyrighted and printed.
Their Hebrew origin, as claimed in the Book of Mormon, is also a matter of importance for our consideration. In relation to this we find that George Catlin, in his work upon the antiquities of America, says:
"From many of their customs, which seem to me to be peculiarly Jewish, as well as from the character of their heads, I am forced to believe that some part of those ancient tribes, who have been dispersed by Christians in so many ways, and in so many different eras, have found their way to this country, where they have entered among the native stock.... I am induced to believe thus from the very many customs which I have witnessed among them, that appear to be decidedly Jewish, and many of
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them so peculiarly so, that it would seem almost impossible, or at all events, exceedingly improbable, that two peoples in a state of nature should have hit upon them, and practiced them exactly alike.... The first and most striking fact amongst the North American Indians that refers us to the Jews, is that of their worshiping, in all parts, the Great Spirit, or Jehovah, as the Hebrews were ordered to do by divine precept, instead of plurality of Gods, as ancient Pagans and Heathens did, and the idols of their own formation." -- North American Indians, vol. 2, p. 232, as copied by Elder M. H. Forscutt.
Their worship of Jehovah, calling him Yohewah, is itself a good assurance of their Hebrew origin. And I have here considerable matter copied from Hon. E. M. Haines' work, "The American Indian" (published in 1888). Upon the subject of the Hebrew origin of the red men, Mr. Haines says:
"Many writers have given special attention to an inquiry into the subject of the American aborigines, with reference to discovering an affinity of this people with the Jews, or people of Israel. Among the class of writers aforesaid is Mr. James Adair, who resided forty years among the American tribes, and who wrote a book on the subject, which was published about the year 1775, in which he, without hesitation, declares that the American aborigines are descendants from the Israelites, and so complete is his conviction on this head, that he declares he finds a perfect and indisputable similitude in each. He says: 'From the most accurate observations I could make, in the long time I traded among the Indians of America, I was forced to believe them lineally descended from the tribes of Israel.'" -- The American Indian, p. 98.
Mr. Haines continues:
"One of the earnest writers in support of this theory in later times, is Rev. Ethan Smith, of Poultney, Vermont,
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as shown in his book entitled 'View of the Hebrew, or the Tribes of Israel in America,' published in 1825, wherein he undertakes to prove, citing Mr. Adair and others, that the American Indians are descendants from the lost tribes of Israel.
"Mr. Smith sums up the argument of Mr. Adair that the natives of this continent are of the ten tribes of Israel, to the following effect: 1. Their division into tribes. 2. Their worship of Jehovah. 3. Their notions of a theocracy. 4. Their belief in the administration of angels. 5. Their language and dialects. 6. Their manner of counting time. 7. Their prophets and high priests. 8. Their festivals, fasts and religious rites. 9. Their daily sacrifice. 10. Their ablutions and anointings. 11. Their laws of uncleanliness. 12. Their abstinence from unclean things. 13. Their marriage, divorces and punishments of adultery. 14. Their several punishments. 15. Their cities of refuge. 16. Their purifications and preparatory ceremonies. 17. Their ornaments. 18. Their manner of curing the sick. 19. Their burial of the dead. 20. Their mourning for the dead. 21. Their raising seed to a deceased brother. 22. Their change of names adapted to their circumstances and times. 23. Their own traditions; the account of English writers; and the testimonies given by Spaniards and other writers of the primitive inhabitants of Mexico and Peru. Many of those who contend for the Jewish origin of the American Indian insist that evidence of this fact is found in the languages of the Indians, which appear clearly to have been derived from the Hebrew. This is the opinion expressed by Mr. Adair, in which Dr. Edwards having a good knowledge of some of the Indian languages, concurs and gives his reasons for believing this people to have been originally Hebrew." -- The American Indian, p. 99.
"A table of words and phrases is furnished by Dr. Boudinot, Adair and others, to show the similarity, in some of
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the Indian languages, to the Hebrew, and that the former must have been derived from the latter. The following is an example from the sources quoted." -- The American Indian, p. 100.
Then follows a lengthy list, but I will read only a small part of it. For instance, the Great First Cause in Hebrew was Jah; in the Indian it is Yah. The Hebrew name Jehovah is in the Indian language Yohewah. The name of God in the Hebrew is Ale or Aleim; in the Indian it is Ale. Shiloh in the Hebrew is Shilu in the Indian. The word Heavens in the Hebrew is Shemin; in the Indian it is Chemim, a final 'm' instead of 'n.' And the name of Father is alike both in the Indian and Hebrew, Abba. Both in the Hebrew and the Indian the name of man is Ish, and the name of woman is Ishto. The wife in the Hebrew is Eweh or Eve; in the Indian it is Awah. In the Hebrew His wife is Lihene; in the Indian it is Liani. The words This man in Hebrew is Huah; in the Indian it is Uwoh. The Hebrew Canaan is in the Indian Canaai. Rushing Wind in the Hebrew is Ruach; in the Indian it is Rowah. See "The American Indian, page 100.
Other words of great similarity might be read from Short, Haines, and others, if it were necessary. This also reminds me of the Seneca Indian whose lecture T heard in Van Buren County, Michigan, in June, 1868. This Indian made the statement that he could refer his hearers to one hundred and fifty words in the Seneca language which closely resembled the Hebrew. It was many years later that T saw the list that I have read a part of here this evening. You can find this list in John T. Short's work (published first in 1880) and on page 100 of Hon. E. M. Haines' "The American Indian," published in 1888.
The Seneca Indian spoken of by me in lectures two and six said he fully believed they were descendants of the Hebrews, and children of the East; that their traditions
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were they would sometime return to the country from which their fathers came, just over which is the spirit land. He stated that the tradition came down to them through many generations about a celestial being who was born of Manito, the Great Spirit, but who had an earthly mother; that he visited their fathers on this land and after that he went away to the north country; but he will return by and by, and then the earth will burst into flame. All this makes clear to us that their ancestors had a knowledge of the time to come when the perishable things of the earth shall be burned, and of the return of Jesus Christ, when there shall be a great change wrought upon the face of the earth. The traditions that the Seneca spoke of are evidences of a Hebrew origin, as well as the discoveries of the same nature as made by Mr. Adair and others.
I refer you again to Hon. E. M. Haines' volume, "The American Indian," page 101, where he mentions Dr. Boudinot speaking of the Penobscot Indians (of New England) calling a high mountain west of them, Ararat. And Dr. Boudinot relates attending an Indian religious dance, during which they "all joined in a lively and joyful chorus, and sung halleluyah; dwelling on each syllable with a very long breath, in a most pleasing manner," about which the learned doctor said there was Do deception, and their pronunciation was "distinct and clear." Mr. Haines quotes the Rev. Ethan Smith as remarking upon this fact as follows:
"'How could it be possible that the wild native Americans, in different parts of the continent, should be found singing this phrase of praise to the Great First Cause, or to Jah -- exclusively Hebrew, without having brought it down by tradition from ancient Israel? The positive testimonies of such men as Boudinot and Adair are not to be dispensed with nor doubted. They testify what they have
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seen and heard. And I can conceive of no rational way to account for this Indian song, but that they brought it down from ancient Israel, their ancestors.'" -- The American Indian, p. 101.
Mr. Haines quotes Dr. Boudinot again, as follows: "'Their languages in their roots, idioms and particular construction, appear to have the whole genius of the Hebrew; and what is very remarkable have most of the peculiarities of that language, especially those in which it differs from most other languages."' -- The American Indian, p. 101.
Mr. Haines' own words follow the above from Dr. Boudinot, as here given, quoted from the same page:
"It is also insisted by many, as further evidence showing the Jewish origin of the American Indian, that they have had their imitation of the ark of the covenant in ancient Israel. Rev. Ethan Smith says that different travelers, and from different regions, unite in this, and he refers to the fact that Mr. Adair is full in his account of it. He describes it as a small square box, made convenient to carry on the back; that the Indians never set it on the ground, but on rocks (logs?) in low ground where stones were not to be had; and on stones where they are to be found. Mr. Adair in reference to this matter says:
"'It is worthy of notice that they never place the ark on the ground, nor set it on the bare earth when they are carrying it against an enemy. On hilly ground, where stones are plenty, they place it on them. But in level land, upon short logs, always resting themselves (i. e., the carriers of the ark) on the same materials. They have also as strong a faith of the power and holiness of their ark as ever the Israelites retained of theirs. The Indian ark is deemed so sacred and dangerous to touch, either by their own sanctified warriors, or the spoiling enemy, that neither of them dare meddle with it on any account. It is
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not to be handled by any except the chieftain and his waiter, under penalty of incurring great evil; nor would the most inveterate enemy dare to touch it. The leader virtually acts the part of a priest of war, pro tempore, in imitation of the Israelites fighting under the divine military banner."' -- The American Indian, p. 101.
On page 81 of volume 5 of "Native Races" Mr. Bancroft mentions the Mexican tradition of their fathers undertaking a journey at the command of a god, which journey was a long one, and was under the direction of certain high priests, who miraculously obtained supplies for the support of the people. Bancroft says -- "This bears a striking resemblance to the Hebrew story of the wandering in the desert."
Mr. Bancroft also speaks of Father Duran's idea that the Indians are descendants of the ten lost tribes, because of the Hebrew analogies of customs, language, religion, etc. He says that Duran gave scriptural reasons and also various traditions that he obtained from the aged Indians while he was doing missionary work among them. Bancroft says:
"They related that their ancestors, whilst suffering many hardships and persecutions, were prevailed upon by a great man, who became their chief, to flee from that, land into another, where they might have rest; they arrived at the seashore, and the chief struck the waters with a rod he had in his hands; the sea opened, and the chief and his followers marched on, but were soon pursued by their enemies; they crossed over in safety, and their enemies were swallowed up by the sea.... Another tradition transmitted from generation to generation, and recorded in pictures, is, that while their first ancestors were on their journey to the promised land, they tarried in the vicinity of certain high hills; here a terrible earthquake occurred, and some wicked people who were with
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them were swallowed up by the earth opening under their feet." -- Native Races, Vol. 5, p. 89, footnote. For the above he credits Duran's manuscript history of the Indians, Vol. 1, chap. 1.
This last tradition can mean nothing less than the rebellion of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, as related in Numbers.
Mr. Bancroft copies Mr. Adair's compilation of the similarities between the Hebrew beliefs and customs and those of the Indians, of which I here present the most important or striking ones, as follows:
"'The Israelites were divided into Tribes and had chiefs over them, so the Indians divide themselves: each tribe forming a little community within the nation -- And as the nation hath its particular symbol, so hath each tribe the badge from which it is denominated.'...
"The Hebrew nation were ordered to worship Jehovah the true and living God, who by the Indians is styled Yohewah.... Their opinion that God chose them out of all the rest of mankind as his peculiar and beloved people, fills both the white Jew and the red American, with that steady hatred against all the world, which renders them hated and despised by all.
"The Indian language and dialects appear to have the very idiom and genius of the Hebrew. Their words and sentences are expressive, concise, emphatical, sonorous, and bold, and often both in letters and signification synonymous with the Hebrew language. They count time after the manner of the Hebrews, reckoning years by lunar months like the Israelites who counted by moons. The religious ceremonies of the Indian Americans are in conformity with those of the Jews, they having their Prophets, High Priests, and others of religious order. As the Jews bad a sanctum sanctorum or most holy place, so have all the Indian nations. The dress also of their
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High Priests is similar in character to that of the Hebrews." -- Native Races, vol. 5, footnote on pp. 91, 92.
Again I quote from Lord Kingsborough, he being another one who gives strong testimony that the ancient Americans were of Hebrew origin. He is quoted by Elder S. F. Walker as follows:
"An infinite variety of facts connected with the customs, religious rites and ceremonies, and opinions of the Indians, are utterly inexplicable, except on the supposition that America has in early ages been colonized by Christians: and not a few others are difficult to be accounted for unless we suppose that colonies had proceeded to that continent from Egypt. In the first class may be reckoned the Christian doctrines and traditions discovered in America; in the second the discovery of Greek crosses in many provinces of New Spain, and of brass money. in the shape of a cross, as of the Greek letter [T]. The art of embalming, which in Peru was carried to the highest perfection; the pyramidal shape of the Mexican Teocallis, some of which, for example the temple of Cholula, and that discovered by Mons. Dupaix among the ruins of the city of Palenque, were like Egyptian pyramids, hollow in the interior; the use of the temazcalli, or vapor bath, which was very general in New Spain; but above all, the invention of the Mexican calendar, which nearly agreeing with the Coptic, especially in an extraordinary intercalation of a month every four years displayed an exact knowledge of the duration of the year." -- Mexican Antiquities, vol. 6, p. 187.
"The Toltecas were most probably Jews who had colonized America in very early ages, bringing along with them the knowledge of various arts, and instructing the Indians in them, but especially propagating among them their own religious doctrines, rites, ceremonies, and superstitions, which seem to have pervaded the New World
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from one end of that vast continent to the other, and even to have extended to some of the islands in the Pacific Ocean." -- Ibid., vol. 6, p. 255.
"It is certainly surprising to see how nearly the Jewish costume is imitated in some of the Mexican paintings. In the twelfth page of that manuscript of the Bodlean library, which seems to represent the migration of the Mexicans, or some other subject connected with a descent into hell, and which is unfortunately only a fragment of a larger painting, from which a part has evidently been torn off, the figure occurs of a Mexican priest in a dress very like that of the high priest of the Jews; the linen ephod, the breastplate, and the border of pomegranates, described in Exodus, are there in a manner represented." -- Ibid., vol. 6, p. 296.
"We are induced from all these considerations to believe that the Peruvian sacrifices of atonement and burnt offerings were originally instituted amongst the Indians by the Jews; and that time had corrupted them, as likewise the feast of the Passover, into a mass of superstitions." -- Ibid., vol. 6, p. 302.
"It deserves to be remarked that as amongst the Jews certain cities were appointed as cities of refuge, by which criminals might fly and escape the punishment of the law, so amongst the Mexicans and amongst most of the Indian states, there were appointed places of refuge to which culprits might fly and escape the punishment of the law." -- Ibid., p. 320.
"It is obvious that we can not compare the temple of Jerusalem, as a whole, with any of the Mexican temples, because we have not a perfect idea of all its parts. It is only from scattered passages of Scripture that we are enabled to guess that there were many features of resemblance between these different structures." -- Ibid., p. 378.
"It is so singular a fact that the Indians of Mexico and
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Peru should have believed with Christians in many doctrines which were held to be peculiarly and exclusively Christian, and to constitute a line of demarcation between Christianity and all other religions that it appears a convincing proof that Christianity must, in early ages, have been established in America, and that ancient communication existed between the Old and the New Continents at a period long antecedent to the age of Columbus." -- Ibid., p. 409.
"The doctrine of a vicarial atonement, or of a sacrifice for sin, whereby the guilt of one party is expiated and atoned for by the innocent blood of another, was also well known to the Indians; and the question is curious, how traces of this doctrine should have been discovered in America, and how, on the supposition of these traces, affording indications of Christianity having in earlier ages existed in that continent, the doctrines of a purer faith could have thus degenerated, and in time have become mingled with such barbarous superstitions." -- Ibid., p. 409.
"Torquemada writes: 'It was likewise found that in some provinces of New Spain, as in Tolonaca, they expected the coming of the Son of the great God, who was the Qieu, into the world; and they said that he was to come to renew all things; although they did not believe in interpreting this in a spiritual, but in a temporal and earthly sense. For example, they thought that on his c oming, the grain would be of a pure and more substantial quality; that their fruit would be better flavored, and more excellent in its kind -- that the lives of men would be considerably prolonged, and that everything else would become better in a corresponding degree."' -- Ibid., p. 413.
"Rosales, in his history of Peru says: 'That in former times, as they had heard their fathers say, a wonderful man had come to their country, Smearing a long beard,
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with shoes, and a mantle, such as the Indians carry on their shoulders, who performed many miracles, cured the sick with water, caused it to rain, and their crops and grain to grow, kindled fire at a breath and wrought other marvels, healing at once the sick and giving sight to the blind."' -- Ibid., p. 419.
"For the Mexicans believe that Quecalcoatle took human nature upon him, partaking of all the infirmities of man, and was not exempt from sorrow, pain and death, and that he suffered voluntarily to atone for the sins of mankind. They also believe that he alone, of all the Gods, had a human body, and was of a corporeal essence."' -- Ibid., p. 507.
The preceding eleven quotations are taken from Elder Walker's extracts from Kingsborough, and are found on pages 266, 322, 325, 357, 358, 359, 419, and 421 of volume two of Autumn Leaves.
Kingsborough also produces evidence that the ancients practiced the ordinance of baptism and the sacrament of the Lord's supper, but both in a perverted manner. Many other things are interesting, but those dwelt upon are the chiefest in importance.
On pages 68 and 69 of his "American Antiquities," Mr. Josiah Priest relates the finding of an important Hebrew relic by Mr. Joseph Merrick, in the year 1815, in what was known as Indian Hill, near Pittsfield, Massachusetts. Mr. Merrick was plowing and leveling the hill, and at a depth of several feet he found what afterwards proved, on examination and cutting into, to be two pieces of rawhide, so sewed and gummed together as to be water-tight. Between the folds were found four pieces of dark and yellow parchment. covered with written characters. One became torn in pieces, but the other three were carried to Cambridge College, and the writing was found to be "in Hebrew, plain and legible." The writing was "quotations
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from the Old Testament," the texts being "Deuteronomy 4:4-9; 11:13-21; Exodus 13:11-16, inclusive."
Mr. Priest said he considered that these passages found in the strap of rawhide "had, unquestionably, been written on the very pieces of parchment before Israel left the land of Syria, more than twenty-five hundred years ago," though probably they had not been inclosed in the pieces of rawhide for a very great length of time.
Hon. H. H. Bancroft on pace 93 of his fifth volume also copies the same account from Mr. Priest's book. Afterwards on page 94 he copies a description given by his father, Mr. A. A. Bancroft, of a stone containing Hebrew characters, which he saw, said stone having been taken from a mound eight miles southeast of Newark, Ohio, many years ago. Mr. Bancroft, the elder, wrote an account of it, which was incorporated with the work "Antiquities of Licking County," from which his son quotes it. The elder Bancroft writes that the stone was "very hard and of fine quality," the size being eight inches long, an inch and a half thick, and four and a half inches wide at one end and tapering to three inches at the other.
"'Upon the face of the slab was the figure of a man, apparently a priest, with a long flowing beard, and a robe reaching to his feet. Over his head was a curved line of characters, and upon the edges and back of the stone were closely and neatly carved letters. The slab, which I saw myself, was shown to the Episcopalian clergyman of Newark, and he pronounced the writing to be the ten commandments in ancient Hebrew.' " -- Native Races, vol. 5, pp. 94, 95.
Of this stone Elder S. F. Walker, in his "Ruins Revisited," says that it was seen in 1861 by Dr. Lederer, The Jewish Rabbi, editor of the Israelite Indeed, who published an account of it in his magazine of May, 1861. Dr.
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Lederer said that the carver evidently intended to perpetuate the essence of the divine law on a stone "of such a nature as should be able to resist all influences of the destroying tooth of time." He believed "that, at some remote age, and in some unknown way, one or more pious and distinguished Hebrews came over to this continent, became the teachers of some of the wild tribes of America, and thus introduced not only the knowledge of the true and living Jehovah, but to some extent Jewish, or rather Mosaic rites and ceremonies also." -- Ruins Revisited, p. 215.
Dr. Lederer closed his editorial with these words: "The form of the characters is neither the modern Hebrew, (adopted by the High council in consequence of the fact that the 'Cutbiyiun,' or Samaritans, adopted the ancient Hebrew,) nor is it the Samaritan, which shows again that the writer or writers had already forgotten much. Of one thing, however, I am morally convinced: that this stone is a genuine relic of antiquity, as it would be a greater difficulty to believe in the invention of such a strange mixture of characters, disorder of combination, and innocent blunders, than to believe it the handiwork of one long, since passed away." -- Ruins Revisited, p. 216.
Many more evidences might be presented but it seems needless; for enough proof has been given to satisfy all just demands for evidence that the native Americans were descendants from the Hebrew tribes. If you desire more, read Bancroft, Priest, Short, Kingsborough, Walker, and other writers.
Turning again to the Book of Mormon we find that the fifth chapter of Nephi chiefly contains the words of Christ. He taught the same sublime truths that he gave to the people in the land of Palestine, and he chose twelve chief ministers to be teachers upon this continent also. Though in the book these twelve are riot called apostles, yet they
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are designated as chief disciples. He established baptism as the divine order by which people should receive a remission of their sins. He taught the ordinance of the laying on of hands as the principle of the gospel plan for the conferring of the Holy Ghost. He taught the administration of the sacrament, and commanded his disciples to continue the observance of this until he should return to the earth again.
He blessed their children and showed that this ordinance was in harmony with those divine and eternal principles for the blessing of God's people and their children upon the earth. They saw their children encircled with fire, as it seemed, and they witnessed that angels ministered to thew.. The heavens were opened to show them the glory, the favor, and the peace of God towards the little ones, even as Jesus, when he was in Palestine, took them in his arms, put his hands upon them and blessed them, and said, "Of such is the kingdom of heaven."
There is no teaching, either in the Bible or in the Book of Mormon, that infants are to be baptized; but, instead, brands are to be laid on them by Christ's ministers that God may bless them, just as Jesus set the example, and as is recorded in the New Testament and in the Book of Mormon. They are to be blessed by those who have authority, so flat the favor and peace of God may be with them.
Also to the people on this continent Christ taught the same doctrine of salvation and eternal life, and of the resurrection of the dead; and he prophesied concerning the latter days, and of the restoration of Israel and the Jews. At last, as recorded on page 474, after he had thus taught and ministered unto them, the record says that when Jesus had spoken these words he touched every one of them with his finger (that is, those chief disciples) and he departed; and, behold, the heavens were opened, and he was caught up into heaven,
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Thus he returned to his Father, from whom he came, to sit with him upon his throne until the earth shall be prepared that he may return and reign over it as its Redeemer and King.
These are very serious matters to consider, and they should not be passed lightly over, neither by those who believe this doctrine nor by those who do not believe it. It is right that we should consider the evidences upon all these important points, to see if they are in harmony with the purpose of God and the work of Jesus Christ, that he should make his appearance upon this continent; that he should come to a people whom he would find here, as well as that he should visit any other part of the earth.
The book states that for two hundred years after the departure of Christ they were a righteous and happy people. In time, after the great destruction, they rebuilt many of the old cities and restored the proper condition of things.
I was asked to-day how far I believed that great shaking and overthrow extended. I replied that neither his story nor the traditions of the natives give us reason to believe that it included anything more than Central America and the northern part of South America (along the Caribbean Sea), and likely Southern Mexico, in which lands then dwelt the main bodies of the Nephites and Lamanites. The scene of the history, and the region into which Christ came to them, was Northern South America, evidently, but the book says that even greater destruction took place in the land northward. And we learn from Bancroft and other writers that Central America was indeed the chief center of those great catastrophes, by which much land was sunk and the waves of the sea came over the cities. The Book of Mormon and the historians agree on this point. Neither of them locate the scene of the great overthrow
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as in the United States, but further south in Central and South America.
After two hundred years there came an increase of pride, and a growth in sin, more or less, as you may read. The book says:
"And now in this two hundred and first year, there began to be among them those who were lifted up in pride, such as the wearing of costly apparel, and all manner of tine pearls, and of the fine things of the world. And from that time forth they did have their goods and their substance no more common among them, and they began to be divided into classes and they began to build up churches unto themselves, to get gain, and began to deny the true church of Christ. And it came to pass that when two hundred and ten years had passed away, there were many churches in the land; yea, there were many churches which professed to know the Christ, and yet they did deny the more parts of his gospel, insomuch that they did receive all manner of wickedness, and did administer that which was sacred unto him to whom it had been forbidden, because of unworthiness." -- Nephi 1:7, 8.
That is, they departed from their simplicity and their integrity, from their virtue and righteousness, and they admitted sin, more or less. Statements of their prosperity and greatness I might read more fully to you; but time passes and I can not.
In the three hundred and sixty-sixth year after the Savior's birth we find that the Lamanites offered sacrifices of human beings. Long before that time (Alma 12:4), at least one hundred years before Christ came, they worshiped idols, and they offered sacrifices to the idols, but we do not learn, until near the close of the history, that they offered human beings as sacrifices. But they did do so during their final wars with the Nephites. We read that they marched forth against the city Teancum, and
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drove the inhabitants forth out of her, and took many prisoners, both women and children, and offered them up as sacrifices unto their idol gods. See Mormon 2:2, 3.
As corroborative evidence in favor of the book that the offering of sacrifices to idols was not had among them in early times, I refer you to M. Charnay's volume. He says of certain cities which he and his assistant exhumed in 1880:
"When these excavations first began, statues, stones of sacrifice (indicative of later times), columns, huge flags, and cement were unearthed. Unfortunately the whole was destroyed by these ignorant people." -- Ancient Cities, p. 196.
Yes, the stones of sacrifice were indicative of later times. That is, the earlier worship did not include sacrificial altars; and, so far as the Toltecs are concerned, "no human blood ever stained their altars," as Charnay says. But the Lamanites did worship idols, and finally they offered sacrifices of human beings before those idols. No doubt the Nephite posterity in later ages came to worship traditional gods, but they offered no human sacrifices, as Charnay shows, and probably never offered any sacrifices, neither worshiped idols of any sort.
Not only the Book of Mormon relates it, but also there is now sufficient outside evidence that stone idols and altars of sacrifice were abundant among the Lamanites, or more degraded Indians. The volumes of Stephens, Squier, and other explorers abundantly prove this. I present before you here pictures of such idols, taken from both S. L. Stephens' work, and that of Hon. E. G. Squier, the latter book entitled, "Nicaragua," published in 1856.
We consider this to be another great evidence of the truth of the Book of Mormon history; because years passed after that book was published before explorers brought to light the facts that indorse the book on this
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point. In 1829 who would have even ventured such a guess, or to write such an account as is found in that book about the worship of idols? Certainly not the plain and simple men who are the supposed authors of that book. They could have had no forecast of what would be discovered in Central America in 1840 by John L. Stephens, or by others later than that. Even bold and skillful novelists would scarce venture now, and much less would they have done so in that early day.
To be sure, when Cortez captured the city of Mexico, he found that the Aztecs slew human beings in or upon their temples. But I do not find proof that this fact found by the Spaniards was published or known in the United States prior to 1830. Certainly till Stephens' work was published in l841 it was not known that deep in the forests of Central America were the proofs that an idol-worshiping people dwelt there in past ages. As the great cities were buried in the forests and not known to American travelers and historians until 1840, so also the idols were likewise in the depths of the same forest until our time.
As a result of this war, wherein the Lamanites began to offer the Nephites in sacrifice before their idols, the Nephites were driven from their homes and from their country. Some escaped into South America, but the main body was driven north and northeast. Others, doubtless, hid away in distant valleys and canyons.
Perhaps also the Zuni Indians are of Nephite origin; for, from time immemorial, they have been a peace-loving race, always cultivating the soil and dwelling in cities. I saw one of these cities in New Mexico two years ago, and I became still more interested in their history than before. That the seed of Nephi was not to be entirely destroyed is the statement in the Book of Mormon. On page 75 are the words of Jacob, the brother of Nephi, to this effect.
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"Let your hearts rejoice, and behold how great the covenants of the Lord, and how great his condescensions unto the children of men; and because of his greatness, and his grace and mercy, he has promised unto us that our seed shall not utterly be destroyed, according to the flesh, but that he would preserve them: and in future generations, they shall become a righteous branch unto the house of Israel." -- 2 Nephi 6: 16.
On page 493 we read that some of the Nephites escaped lnto the land southward. Also in other parts of the book there are evidences that the Lord intended to preserve a remnant, or remnants, of them.
Doubtless they were scattered and driven in bands to various secluded places, and from them came the light- complexioned tribes who have been known since the time the Europeans settled this country, such as the Mandans and other tribes mentioned by travelers and explorers. But the two armies fought with desperation, until they were nearly annihilated.
The Prophet Mormon made an abridgment of the history of the colony from the beginning, taking it from the plates of Nephi, as written by Nephi and by those who succeeded him in charge of the sacred records. During the year 384 from Christ's birth, or immediately after that, Mormon secreted the body of the records. He says of this:
"Knowing it to be the last struggle of my people, and having been commanded of the Lord that I should not suffer that the records which had been handed down by our fathers, which were sacred, to fall into the hands of the Lamanites, (for the Lamanites would destroy them,) therefore I made this record out of the plates of Nephi, and hid up in the hill Cumorah, all the records which had been entrusted to me by the hand of the Lord, save it were these few plates which I give unto my son Moroni." -- Mormon 3:2.
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We know not just how many of the different records or histories Mormon thus preserved, but the Book of Mormon shows the following to have been written prior to itself:
Record of Lehi. See pages 3, 11, and 43, small edition.
Large and small histories by Nephi. Pages 3, 11, 16, 43, 62, 65, 112, 131, 135, 138, 139, 142, 200, 303, 431, 470, and 485, small edition.
Brass plates of Laban. Pages 5, 6, 8-11, 52, 61, 64, 141, 142, 200, 303, 305, small edition.
Jaredite history, 24 gold plates. Pages 137, 158, 185, 200, 305, 501, 533, small edition.
History of Zarahemlaites. Page 137, small edition. Record by Zeniff. Pages 158, 161, 191, small edition. But the abridgment which Mormon called "these few plates," he gave to his son Moroni. See pages 139, 431, 470, 490, 492, small edition.
And this is that now known as the Book of Mormon, first published in 1829-1830. On page 494 Moroni says:
"I will write and hide up the records in the earth, and whither I go it mattereth not.... Behold four hundred years have passed away since the coming of our Lord and Savior." -- Mormon 4:1.
Moroni closes the record as follows: "I write unto my brethren the Lamanites, and I would that they should know that more than four hundred and twenty years have passed away, since the sign was given of the coming of Christ. And I seal up these records, after I have spoken a few words by way of exhortation unto you." -- Moroni 10:1.
Thus, about thirty-six years after Mormon hid the original histories from which the Book of Mormon had been compiled, Moroni secreted the plates which were found by Joseph Smith in 1823 to 1827, as directed by the angel. Therefore we see that when the worst came, then
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the keepers of the records completed their trust and perished, having been promised by the Lord that the sacred record should come to the knowledge of a people dwelling upon this land in latter days. And in accordance with those promises, made all along from the time of Lehi, we believe the book has come forth.
Evidences are not lacking that such a book was in the hands of the ancestors of the Indians, and that it was secreted, or lost to sight. In his "Mexican Antiquities," Lord Kingsborough quotes the writings of the Spaniard, Torquemada, concerning the Catholic priest, Diego de Mercado, who conversed with an aged Otomie Indian, and he relates that
"The Indian told him that they in ancient times had been in possession of a book which was handed down successively from father to son in the person of the eldest, who was dedicated to the safe custody of it, and to instruct others in its doctrines.... On the ecclesiastic's questioning the Indian as to the contents of the book and its doctrines, he was unable to give him further information, but simply replied that if the book had not been lost, he would have seen that the doctrine which he (Mercado) taught and preached to them and those which the book contained were the same." -- Mexican Antiquities, vol. 6, p. 409, as copied by Elder S. F. Walker, and published in Autumn Leaves, vol. 2, p. 358.
You can at once see the value of this testimony, and, as the publication of Kingsborough's nine large folio volumes did not begin until 1830, you can also see that the writers of the Book of Mormon could not have borrowed from it. Kingsborough obtained his information from the original Spanish document. Torquemada's manuscript was written in Spanish and not translated into English until since 1830.
Josiah Priest (the first edition of whose work was
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published in 1833) quotes from a small book by Dr. West [sic - Rev. Smith?], called "Views of the Hebrews," page 223, as follows:
"Dr. West, of Stockbridge (Massachusetts), relates, that an old Indian informed him, that his fathers in this country had, not long since, been in the possession of a book, which they had, for a long time, carried with them; but, having lost the knowledge of reading it, they buried it with an Indian chief." -- American Antiquities, p. 69, edition of 1835.
Of course, in the passage of time it would be natural that the tradition should be changed some. Instead of being buried with the body of a chief, it was buried by a chief or prophet. Thus both from Mexico and from New England come the same story, namely, that their fathers possessed a book that was sacred, and which was handed down from one generation to another. Kingsborough and Priest have published to the world the facts that substantiate the Book of Mormon; for in it you plainly read how the record was preserved in the hands of faithful and righteous men, from generation to generation until hidden away. Thus, on this point also, is there entire harmony between the Book of Mormon and the discoveries made by wise men as to the ancient people of America and their works.
What need we do more? What need we say more? As the Book of Mormon comes to us as the translation of a book that was thus hidden by the ancients, and as it teaches the same doctrines as the Bible, therefore, have we not good reasons for believing it to be the history of the ancient Americans, as it professes to be? Also that the writing on the plates was translated by means of the interpreter, the Urim and Thummim, which the Lord had provided and caused to be placed with the records for that very purpose?
I have before quoted the theologian, Watson, who says that these precious stones were no longer in the possession
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of the Jewish nation after the time of the Babylonish captivity. I believe that they were then transferred by the Lord into the hands of the "branch," as the Lord calls it (Book of Mormon, pages 59 and 116, small edition), of the house of Israel, which he brought to this "promised land," under charge of Lehi and Nephi, and that they remained with the record until the promised time of the Lord came, and then the writing was translated; and it is that which is called the Book of Mormon, the history of that ancient colony; and this is according to the tradition of their descendants, that a book was hidden, evidently, a precious book, because it was so carefully kept in former times.
We speak also of our understanding that this book comes into use in this generation by the will of God; and we turn to the Bible and read as follows:
"Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions: and join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand. And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these? Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the srick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand. And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes. And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land."-- Ezek. 37: 16-21.
In this quotation we have in brief our position upon this
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point of origin. Our understanding is that the stick ol Judah here referred to is the Bible. It is essentially a record that was written by Moses and later Hebrew prophets and leaders to the Hebrews, mainly by Jewish prophets to the Jews alone, after the division and loss of the ten tribes. In those times their parchment writings were made into a "roll" or stick, which was read by unrolling from one end and rolling at the other as read.
Also the prophecy said that there were two of these important writings, one especially for or to Judah, the other one for or to Joseph's tribe, or posterity; these were written by wise rulers and scribes to the people of their separate tribes. And, from the prophecy, evidently these writings were designed to be brought together, to be used as concurrent testimony upon important matters, in the sight of the Lord. Because the consequence of the prophecy and the result of the union of the books is that God's promises shall be fulfilled in the gathering of his ancient covenant people, Israel. The Lord said of old:
"Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen (the Gentile nations), whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: and I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all." -- Ezek. 37:21, 22.
And upon that glad night of September 21, 1823, when the angel declared to Joseph Smith that this was the generation in which the Lord would set his hand (Isaiah 11:11) to gather his people, that this was the appointed time when God's Spirit should move upon them in every land, it was spoken unto the accomplishment of his former promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, that, though for their sins
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they might be driven to the uttermost parts of the earth, nevertheless he would finally bring them and plant them it their own land; and that he would not cease his work for them until that gathering should be accomplished.
Yes, the evidences in favor of the book are increasing all the time. And what could that boy of seventeen years have understood or comprehended by any guesswork or cunning craft of his own, that he should have stated such wonderful things that since his time have been fulfilled, and that are more and more being made manifest in testimony that he told the truth?
That it is a fact that since 1830 there has been a great increase in the Jewish population of Palestine, one little extract from a Jewish paper of our time will abundantly prove, and there is now so much known upon that, that no more need be given. It is as follows:
"In 1840 there were only eight thousand Jews in Palestine. This number had increased in 1883 to twenty-three thousand, and there are now estimated to be seventy-five thousand Jews in the Holy Land." -- American Hebrew, a paper issued in 1890.
Yes, the Jews are now recognizing the moving hand of God in this direction, and Sir Moses Montefiore and other great men among them, have recently made use of great wealth and power to help usher in what they have felt assured God intended to do speedily for his people. But who could have foretold in 1830 that it should soon be? Joseph Smith says that an angel of God, a glorious personage, a messenger of light and truth, so declared to him. Afterwards he learned that the prophets of the Bible said that when the two books should come together, so in that time would the work of the gathering of believing Israel begin.
"Hear the word of the Lord, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel
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will gather him, and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock." -- Jer. 31:10.
We believe that these evidences can not well be denied; and, though men may laugh scornfully at the latter-day work, though they may select some particular point and ridicule it, yet a grand sublimity runs throughout all this story. And, as the years pass, there come weightier evidences in its behalf, so that he who desires to examine the principles and the proofs of it, may become convinced that we have not believed a lie, but instead that it is the truth.
And this last record was to be in the hands of Ephraim, the firstborn that is, he who is spoken of in the scriptures as the brother of Manasseh, "God make thee as Ephraim and Manasseh." And it should be in the time when God would perform a certain work, when he should speak from out of the heavens, as recorded in the book of Revelation:
"And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." -- Rev. 18: 4.
Also in Isaiah we have a warning to the inhabitants of the earth in this generation:
"All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers on the earth, see ye, when he lifteth up an ensign on the mountains; and when he bloweth a trumpet, hear ye." -- Isaiah 18:3.
The Lord is to sound a warning trumpet; he is to declare the truths of heaven upon the earth; he is to lift up some kind of an ensign or standard, that men may see that it is from God, if they will believe his word. A voice is to speak out of heaven, as declared here by the revelator. It will not be the voice of reformers, but John said, "I heard a voice from heaven saying, Come out of her, my people." We believe this is the time spoken of in the prophets; and
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if it has not yet come to pass it must come. In his seventy-first sermon, John Wesley said:
"The times which we have reason to believe are at hand -- are what many pious men have termed the time of the latter-day glory, meaning the time wherein God would gloriously display his power and love in the fulfillment of his promise that the 'knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters fill the great deep.'... What could God have done which he hath not done, to convince you that the time is at hand when he will fulfill his glorious promise, and will arise and maintain his own cause and set up his kingdom."
Thus the Lord enlightened Wesley's mind upon the latter-day work, and we now are sent to declare, not that the time is at hand, but that it has fully come. The records are together, and they agree in testimony; also God is moving wondrously to bring to pass his great purpose. Yet, as said Wesley:
"Wise men of the world, men of learning and renown do not understand what we mean by talking of an extraordinary work of God. They see no signs at all of God's arising to maintain his own cause, and set up his kingdom over the earth." -- Sermon 71.
We believe also there is to-day among the nations of the earth the seed of Jacob, a portion of Israel mixed with the people, as you may read in Micah:
"And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people as a dew from the Lord, as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men." -- Micah 5:7.
We believe that the seed of Jacob exists now as a saving power among all nations, and that many who accept the gospel to-day are of the blood of ancient Israel. Such particularly receive the gospel and rejoice in it.
I remember talking in 1869 with a Methodist minister in
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a town near Saint Paul, Minnesota. He said: "If you had the truth that you claim you have, the people would flock to hear you as they did to hear the disciples on the day of Pentecost."
I replied that the people who gathered on that day were children of Abraham, of the house of Israel, and direct heirs to faith, and when they saw proofs presented from God's word many were ready to accept the word preached. They did not fight against it after good reasons bad been presented in its favor. But Dow is the ace of unbelief, of skepticism, and it is hard for the Gentile world to accept even the plainest proofs. They are not willing to believe.
Yet, even now, when men and women love truth more than they do to have the favor of the world, or popularity, or wealth, when such receive the truth it seems that the Holy Spirit comes upon them as the gentle rain falls upon the waiting earth, and both alike are made fruitful. Such rejoice to hear the evidences of God's dealings with the nations, and they are led to look for the kingdom of God. He has said in our time that such shall be looking forth for the signs of his coming.
I add some further evidences of the greatness and the intelligence of the ancient Americans. For instance, take the subject of astronomy. Learned explorers and diligent students say that they had quite an advanced knowledge of this science.
First, we find Professor Baldwin quotes from Mr. Schoolcraft about the discovery of "several tubes of stone" in West Virginia in 1842. He says that they "were carved out of steatite, being skillfully cut and polished." Their diameter was one inch and a fifth, and the bore was three fourths of an inch, at the sight end brought down to one fifth. Thus the light was shut out and distant objects are more clearly discerned," so wrote Mr. Schoolcraft. He wrote further that if this was "intended for a telescopic
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tube, it is a most interesting relic." To this Mr. Baldwin adds the following:
"An ancient Peruvian relic, found a few years since, shows the figure of a man wrought in silver, in the act of studying the heavens through such a tube. Similar tubes have been found among relics of the Mound-Builders in Ohio and elsewhere." -- Ancient America, p. 42.
Later Mr. Baldwin quotes from Captain Dupaix as follows:
"'Near the road... there is an isolated granite rock, which was artificially formed into a kind of pyramid with six hewn steps facing the east. The summit of this structure is a platform, or horizontal plane, well adapted to observation of the stars on every side of the hemisphere. It is almost demonstrable that this very ancient monument was exclusively devoted to astronomical observations, for on the south side of the rock are sculptured several hieroglyphical figures having relation to astronomy. The most striking figure in the group is that of a man in profile, standing erect, and directing his view to the rising stars in the sky. He holds to his eye a tube or optical instrument."' -- Ancient America, pp. 122, 123.
Mr. Baldwin mentions a device found at Chapultepec, Mexico, quoting some writer who says:
"'It was a perfect instrument for ascertaining east and west with precision, and for determining the exact time by the rising and setting of the sun at the equinoxes and solstices. This stone has now been broken up and used to construct a furnace."' -- Ancient America, p. 221.
Mr. Baldwin in speaking of the Peruvians says:
"How much they knew of astronomy it is not easy to say. They had knowledge of some of the planets, and it is claimed that there is some reason to believe they used aids to eyesight in studying the heavens.... A discovery made in Bolivia a few years since is cited in support of this
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belief. It is the figure of a man in the act of using a tube to aid vision, which was taken from an ancient tomb. Mr. David Forbes, an English chemist and geologist, obtained it in Bolivia, and carried it to England in 1864." -- Ibid., pp. 253, 254.
Mr. Josiah Priest writes thus about "the great stone calendar of the Mexicans":
"This stone was found near the site of the present City of Mexico, buried some feet beneath the soil, on which is engraven a great number of hieroglyphics, signifying the divisions of time, the motions of the heavenly bodies, the twelve signs of the Zodiac, with reference to the feasts and sacrifices of the Mexicans, and is called by Humboldt the Mexican Calendar.... The size of this Stone was very great, being a fraction over twelve feet square, three feet in thickness, weighing twenty-four tons. It is of the kind of stone denominated trappean porphyry, of the blackish gray color....
"The place where it was found was more than thirty miles from any quarry of the kind; from which we discover the ability of the ancient inhabitants not only to transport stones of great size, as well as the ancient Egyptians, in building their cities and temples of marble, but also to cut and engrave on stone, equal with the present age....
"The sculptured work on this stone is in circles; the outer one of all is a trifle over twenty-seven feet in circumference -- from which the reader can have a tolerable notion of its size and appearance. The whole stone is intensely crowded with representations and hieroglyphics arranged, however, in order and harmony, every way equal with any astronomical calendar of the present day. It is further described by Baron Humboldt, who saw and examined it on the spot.
"'The concentric circles, the numerous divisions and subdivisions engraven on this stone, are traced with
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mathematical precision. The more minutely the detail of this sculpture is examined, the greater the taste we find in the repetition of the same forms."' -- Antiquities of America, pp. 255-257, edition of 1835.
He quotes from Thomas' Travels, page 293, which gives a minute description of the figures on the stone, but what I have given answers all needful purposes in these lectures.
Of the skill of the ancient Peruvians to work in gold and silver Mr. Baldwin states as follows:
"Their goldsmiths and silversmiths had attained very great proficiency. They could melt the metals in furnaces, cast them in moulds made of clay and gypsum, hammer their work with remarkable dexterity, inlay it, and solder it with great perfection. The gold and silver work of these artists was extremely abundant in the country at the time of the Conquest, but Spanish greed had it all melted for coinage.... In the course of twenty-five years after the Conquest, the Spaniards sent from Peru to Spain more than four hundred million ducats (eight hundred million dollars) worth of gold, all or nearly all of it having been taken from the subjugated Peruvians as 'booty."' -- Ancient America, pp. 249-251.
The Peruvians had vessels of gold, as we read from Prescott and Baldwin, and in their temple service the pipes to conduct water were made of silver, and the vessels in the temple, of gold. Articles and ornaments of gold were placed in the tombs of the Peruvian nobility.
"It was with articles of this gold work that the Inca Atahuallpa filled a room in his vain endeavor to purchase release from captivity." -- Ancient America, pp. 249, 250.
Thus the statements of the Book of Mormon about the abundance of the precious metals, and their use, and manufacture, are fully substantiated and established.
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About their agriculture, manufactures, and the arts, Professor Baldwin states as follows:
"The Peruvians were highly skilled in agriculture and in some kinds of manufactures. No people ever had a more efficient system of industry. This created their wealth and made possible their great public works. All accounts of the country at the time of the Conquest agree in the statement that they cultivated the soil in a very admirable way and with remarkable success, using aqueducts for irrigation, and employing guano as one of their most important fertilizers. Europeans learned from them the value of this fertilizer, and its name, guano, is Peruvian. The remains of their works show what they were as builders. Their skill in cutting stone and their wonderful masonry can be seen and admired by modern builders in what is left of their aqueducts, their roads, their temples, and their other great edifices.
"They had great proficiency in the arts of spinning, weaving, and dyeing. For their cloth they used cotton and the wool of four varieties of the llama, that of the vicuna being the finest.... 'They possessed the secret of fixing the dye of all colors, flesh-color, yellow, gray, blue, green, black, etc., so firmly in the thread, or in the cloth already woven, that they never faded during the lapse of ages, even when exposed to the air or buried (in tombs) under ground.'
"They had great skill in the art of working metals, especially gold and silver. Besides these precious metals, they had copper, tin, lead, and quicksilver.... Iron was unknown to them in the time of the Incas, although some maintain that they had it in the previous ages, to which belong the ruins at Lake Titicaca. Iron ore was and still is very abundant in Peru. It is impossible to conceive How the Peruvians were able to cut and work stone in such a masterly way, or to construct their great roads and
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aqueducts without the use of iron tools. Some of the languages of the country, and perhaps all, had names for iron; in official Peruvian it was called and in the old Chilian tongue panilic. 'It is remarkable,' observes Molina, 'that iron, which has been thought unknown to the ancient Americans, has particular names in some of their tongues.' It is not easy to understand why they had names for this metal, if they never at any time had knowledge of the metal itself." -- Ancient America, pp. 247-249.
Josiah Priest tells of a mound near Circleville, Ohio, in which excavations were made. He says that "Mr. Atwater was present when this mound was removed, and carefully examined the contents it developed." He says that the third article was,
"The handle, either of a small sword, or a large knife, made of an elk's horn; around the end where the blade had been inserted, was a ferrule of silver, which, though black, was not much injured by time, though the handle showed the hole where the blade had been inserted, yet no iron was found, but an oxyde or rust remained, of similar shape and size." -- American Antiquities, pp. 184, 185, edition of 1835.
On page 185 Mr. Priest mentions another article found in this mound, namely, a large isinglass mirror, of which he says:
"About twenty feet to the north of it (the first skeleton) was another, with which was found a large mirror, about three feet in length, one foot and a half in width, and one inch and a half in thickness; this was of isinglass, (mica membranacea.)
"On this mirror was a plate of iron, which had become an oxvde, but before it was disturbed by the spade, resembled a plate of cast iron.... A part of the mirror is in the possession of Mr. Atwater, as also a piece of brick,
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taken from the spot at the time. The knife, or sword handle, was sent to Peal's Museum, Philadelphia. . . . The mirror was a monstrous piece of isinglass, a lucid mineral, larger than we recollect to have ever heard of before, and used among the rich of the ancients, for lights and mirrors. A mirror of any kind, in which men may be enabled to contemplate their own form, is evidence of a considerable degree of advancement in the arts, if not even of luxury itself." -- American Antiquities, edition 1835, pp. 185, 186.
Mr. Priest mentions some relics found in a mound in Marietta, Ohio, in 1819, and he states:
"Lying immediately on the forehead of this skeleton, were found three large circular ornaments, which had adorned a sword belt, or buckler, and were composed of copper, overlaid with a plate of silver. The fronts, or show sides, were slightly convex, with a deep depression, like a cup in the center, and measured two inches and a quarter across the face of each. On the back side, opposite the depressed portion, is a copper rivet, around which are two separate plates, by which they were fastened to the leather belt. The two pieces of leather resembled the skin of a mummy, and seemed to have been preserved by the salts of the copper. The plates were nearly reduced to an oxyde or rust.... Near the side of the body was found a plate of silver, which appeared to have been the upper part of a sword scabbard. It was six inches long, and two broad, with two longitudinal ridges, which probably corresponded with the edges or ridges of the sword once sheathed by it, and appeared to have been fastened to the scabbard by several rivets, the holes of which remain in the plate. Two or three pieces of a copper tube were also found with this body, filled with iron rust. The pieces, from their appearances, composed the lower end of the scabbard, near the point of the sword, but no sign of the sword itself, except
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a streak of rust its whole length." -- American Antiquities, edition 1835, pp. 268, 269.
About the discovery of brass relics Mr. Priest says: "In Scipio (New York), on Salmon creek, a Mr. Halsted has, from time to time, during ten years past, ploughed up, on a certain extent of land on his farm, seven or eight hundred pounds of brass, which appeared to have once been formed into various implements, both of husbandry and war; helmets and working utensils mingled together. The finder of this brass, we are informed, as he discovered it carried it to Auburn, and sold it by the pound, where it was worked up, with as little curiosity attending as though it had been but an ordinary article of the country's produce." -- American Antiquities, p. 261, 1835 edition.
Brownell, in his book, "Indian Races, writes as follows: "It has been often questioned whether the use of iron was known to these aboriginal races, but excepting the occasional presence of rust in the excavations, little has been ascertained with accuracy, the perishable nature of this metal peculiarly exposing it to the destroying influence of time and dampness." -- Indian Races, p. 44.
Of course this fact of the speedy decay of iron and steel is sufficient reason why weapons and tools that were used by the Jaredites and Nephites have not been found by us. But the testimonies already presented leave no room for saying that the Book of Mormon is false in saying that those ancients did have full knowledge and use of iron and steel in those ancient times.
Now we take up the subject of the existence of the horse on this continent in former ages, and we find that for thirty years after the Book of Mormon was published, or thereabouts, it was universally said that there could not be any truth in the book, for it stated that the ancient
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Americans had horses. While conversing with my wife's auyit last month she remarked as follows:
"When the Book of Mormon came out my father said that its account about horses being known and used in America in ancient times was enough itself to show that the book was a lie; because every one knew that there were no horses here until they were brought over by the Spaniards."
But how is it now? Why, it is clear, by the discoveries made by geologists, that horses were abundant in America in past ages. Prof. T. W. Foster says that horses existed in America, but that they "had so long disappeared from this country, at the time of its discovery, that the Indians had no tradition of his existence." See Prehistoric Races page 90.
Also Professor Winchell says:
"It is a curious fact that so many genera now extinct from the continent, but living in other quarters of the globe, were once abundant on the plains of North America. Various species of the horse have dwelt here for ages. ...Here, too, the camel found a suitable home." -- Sketches of Creation, p. 210.
Professor Charles Darwin wrote that it was marvelous but true that in South America the native horse "should have lived and disappeared."
From 1860 to 1869 Professors Morse and Riley discovered the fossil remains of seventeen species of the horse on the plains of Kansas and Colorado.
I trust that in these lectures I have gone chiefly over around that was necessary, and although it has taken more time than I anticipated, I hope that nothing presented has really been unnecessary or irrelevant. The testimony is increasing from year to year upon this important subject, and I urge that you continue your searching and investigation until you have a mountain of evidence and a mine of
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satisfaction to go to. Gather for yourselves all that you can. Gather that only which will stand the test both of time and of eternity. That is all we want, all that will do us any good.
Remember that life is for the purpose of obtaining knowledge and happiness. The Book of Mormon says that "man is that he may have joy," and one of the greatest joys is that of gaining an increase of knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of God and his universe. We are not here simply to eat, sleep, have pleasure, and to pass time away, but we are here to make ourselves useful and worthy, and to progress in all good ways.
And there is before you, young men and maidens, such opportunities as your parents never had in their youth, and this time and occasion in the world's great history is such as no other age ever had. You have helps and advantages at hand, and if you will but use them they will bring you stores of wisdom and knowledge that were impossible to be gained in time gone by. We older ones had not in our youth the advantages that you have in this day. With few books or other aids, only by persistent effort and self-denial could preparation be made for even a partial success in the conflict.
Especially to the young men would I say that the time is coming 'when the Lord will want every one of you in his service, if you will by a proper preparation place yourselves in line to do his will. Make yourselves ready by purity of thought, of word, and of life, by integrity, by faithfulness, by study of all good things, and by full endeavor in righteousness and truth, and then will the King of kings say to you, "My son, I have a place for you in my service; I need your help to bring back those who need the light of eternal truth to guide them in the way."
The field is wide, the work is grand, and mav the Holy Spirit inspire you with the continual thought that God
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wants such helpers in his work as you may become, if you but will. One of the reverent poets has said, "Get thy spindle and thy distaff ready and God shall send thee flax," and I believe it to be true. Therefore prepare yourselves, and the Master will find work for you to do, and places, names, and joys among the saviors of men that are to be found nowhere else.
In closing I wish to say that I have been made glad by the interest you have manifested from the first, and by the quiet and orderly assemblies that have been present during nine successive evenings. When I came I felt unable for the task, and I came with reluctance, but your kindness in every way has cheered and comforted me. Therefore, in appreciation of both divine favor and of human friendship and love, I rejoice with you all, and also pray that we may meet again under the smiles of heaven, and especially that we inay be glad together in the eternal and happy home beyond.