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Joseph Smith the Prophet-Teacher A Discourse   By:

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JOSEPH SMITH

THE

PROPHET TEACHER

A DISCOURSE

BY

ELDER B. H. ROBERTS

THE DESERET NEWS

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH

1908

Copyright, 1908. By B. H. Roberts.

TABLE OF CONTENTS.

I. A GREAT POSSIBILITY.

II. HISTORICAL AMERICANS.

III. WHAT IS A PROPHET?

IV. RELIGIOUS AND PHILOSOPHICAL BELIEFS OF ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO.

Revelation. Ideas of Deity. Of the Universe. Of Man. Man and His Salvation. Of the Significance of Salvation and Damnation.

V. THE PROPHET'S CORRECTION OF SECTARIAN ERRORS.

The Doctrine of Revelation. The Being and Kind of Being God Is. Creation, the Law of Substance. Of Man's Origin. Election and Reprobation.

VI. THE PROPHET'S PHILOSOPHICAL DOCTRINES.

The Prophet's Definition of Truth. As to Things Existences. The Reign of Law. Change and Its Tendency. The Existence of Good and Evil. The Intelligent Entity. The Relationship of Intelligences. Man's Freedom. Eternity of Relations.

VII. THE PROPHET'S GENERALIZATIONS.

VIII. AN AMERICAN PROPHET.

America the Old World. The Constitution of the United States Inspired of God. America Fortified of God Against Other Nations.

DEDICATION.

TO MY MOTHER, ON THE ANNIVERSARY OF HER EIGHTY SECOND BIRTHDAY, DECEMBER 18, 1908.

For a long time, my Dear Mother, I have desired to couple remembrance of you with some of my works; and finally have chosen this Discourse upon our great Prophet Teacher to carry with it that distinction. To all who read this Discourse, then, I desire to say that I love and honor you; and that your love for me has ever been an inspiration to my work.

JOSEPH SMITH THE PROPHET TEACHER

A Discourse[A]

[Footnote A: This discourse was delivered at the Tabernacle, Salt Lake City, on Sunday, December 22nd, 1907, at a Memorial Service held in honor of the one hundred and second anniversary of the Prophet's birth, 23rd December 1805.]

Tomorrow will be the one hundred and second anniversary of the birth of Joseph Smith, whom most of you here present believe was a Prophet of God. I have been invited to say something about him on this occasion. It is not at all my intention to deal with the incidents of Joseph Smith's eventful life; these are familiar to you. If I could attain the full desire of my heart, I would like to set before you somewhat the value of this man as a teacher of great truths. I desire to speak of him as a Prophet Teacher, that is, as a Prophet acting in his capacity of Teacher, a Prophet's highest and noblest office.

As an introduction to what I desire to say, I shall read a passage from a book quite famous for its literary merit it has reached its ninth edition; also it is famous for the character sketches of prominent Americans of the early decades of the nineteenth century. The book, "Figures of the Past," was written by Josiah Quincy of the famous Quincy family of Massachusetts, a graduate of Harvard, 1821; mayor of Boston from 1845 to 1849. Mr. Quincy visited Nauvoo in May, 1844, forty three days previous to the martyrdom of the Prophet, and though his "Figures of the Past" was not published until 1882, the year of his death, yet his recollections of the Prophet and his impressions of Nauvoo were drawn from his journal, written at the time of that visit, and numerous letters written to his friends about the same period. Mr. Quincy places his pen portrait of "Joseph Smith at Nauvoo" with similar portraits of such eminent Americans as John Adams, Daniel Webster, John Randolph, Andrew Jackson, and the French soldier and statesman, Lafayette. The passage I am going to read is the opening paragraph of the chapter on "Joseph Smith at Nauvoo."

I.

A GREAT POSSIBILITY.

"It is by no means improbable that some future text book, for the use of generations yet unborn, will contain a question something like this: What historical American of the nineteenth century has exerted the most powerful influence upon the destinies of his countrymen? And it is by no means impossible that the answer to that interrogatory may be thus written: Joseph Smith, the Mormon Prophet... Continue reading book >>




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