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Gospel Topics Chapter 6 Turner Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever
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May 10, 2021 9:11 pm

Gospel Topics Chapter 6 Turner Part 2

Viewpoint on Mormonism / Bill McKeever

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May 10, 2021 9:11 pm

John G. Turner wrote a response to the “Peace and Violence” Gospel Topics essay, and this week Bill and Eric discuss his review and more about one of the 13 original essays published by the church.


Jim, your own words a collection of Mormon quotations compiled by women as research ministries Bill McKeever is a valuable resource when wanting to know what Mormon leaders have said on a given topic and pick up your copy to Utah lighthouse bookstore or .1. Is it examines the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from a biblical perspective viewpoint on Mormonism is sponsored by Mormonism research ministry since 1979 Mormonism research ministry has been dedicated to equipping the body of Christ with answers regarding the Christian faith in a manner that expresses gentleness and respect. And now, your host for today's viewpoint on Mormonism welcome to this edition of viewpoint on Mormonism.

I'm your host, Bill McKeever, founder and director Mormonism research ministry and with me today is Eric Johnson.

My colleague at MRM before we begin today's program might want to start off with a clarification we had been referring to a gentleman in last week show man by the name of Paul are chest span, but we had been pronouncing it. She's been because that's the way it seems to read but we had a very kind listener informed me that in fact his name is pronounced chessmen not.

She's been so we would like to make that correction things are so dark and mysterious. The Thomas Lewis case and violence in early LDS Utah. It's a chapter written by John G Turner, John Turner writes chapter number six minutes to the book LDS gospel topics series a scholarly engagement.

He is going to talk about the essay titled peace and violence among 19th-century Latter Day Saints. Although he admits there is a lot that could be discussed regarding that topic. Paragraph number one on page 166 gives a lot of I guess you could say bullet points for what could have been discussed in this chapter, but unfortunately John Turner doesn't do that he list a lot of subjects that could have been discussed but he spends a lot of time on the Thomas Lewis episode, which we are going to talk about. He writes on page 166. It is also important to note that peace and violence could not possibly discuss everything pertinent to its subject.

Notable omissions include the 1834 Zions camp March in response to the expulsion of Mormons from Jackson County science camp supposedly was given by revelation to Joseph Smith, Joseph Smith, the founder of the Moran movement led this Zions camp to go to Jackson County, Missouri to get back the land that the Mormons were kicked out. Of. Now you would think if this is by revelation, and Joseph Smith feels led to lead this. Why didn't he succeed see the science camp was an utter failure.

Even though it began in May and June 1834 it was disbanded in July 1834. They did not accomplish what Joseph Smith claimed they were to accomplish by getting this land back when the Missourians heard about group of Mormons coming towards them. They were prepared for them, and Joseph Smith had a back down so they did not get that land that science camp was supposed to succeed in getting for the Latter Day Saints so I wish that could have been a topic that was discussed but then he also mentions the allegation that Oren Porter Rockwell, with Joseph Smith's encouragement or approval attempted to assassinate former Missouri governor Lilburn blogs that would've been an interesting topic because here we have a case as a he says Joseph Smith's encouragement or approval that shows some culpability on the part of Joseph Smith. This is just being done by rogue members of the church as I think the essay is trying to imply. This would've been a great opportunity to show that warm Porter Rockwell, who at this time is Joseph Smith's bodyguard.

He later becomes Brigham Young's bodyguard or assassin, depending on which side you might be on you could say because there's a lot of controversy with warm Porter Rockwell, that would've been a great portion. I think to include in this chapter, but he doesn't really deal with that. Oren Porter Rockwell said that he did not try to assassinate Boggs.

What was his statement about that whole incident, Rockwell said something to the effect that if he was the one that took a shot at Boggs he would've killed him not just wounded him and what is that say there was motive for him to be killed in so that said that says a lot. I think either that or he was giving us a little bit of bravado on perhaps how good a shot he was. I don't know but a lot of people seem to think that Rockwell probably did have something to do with that. And Boggs was not killed. However, he was merely wounded. Then he also mentions Sidney Rigdon's salt sermon in which he called for Mormon reprisals against both mobs and dissenters that also would've been a good story, although as far as we understand there is no extent transcript of Sidney Rigdon salt sermon.

We only know what it tended to be a belt based on parties who heard the sermon and wrote about it. But in Sidney Rigdon salt sermon.

It was taken from Matthew 513 where Jesus talks about salt losing its saver and is being good for nothing, and trampled upon.

He uses that verse and he uses it in a way will you say or to use his bully pulpit against dissenters in the Mormon church that was a sermon more against those who were questioning the leadership I thought that would be a fascinating section in this chapter, especially since Joseph Smith himself seem to approve of what was said in the salt sermon. He goes on to talk about instances of violence in Nauvoo, Illinois, in the wake of Joseph Smith's 1844 murder including the existence of whistling and whittling brigades to threaten church enemies. Most people probably have no idea what that is about the tanners did write about wet learners and it makes you wonder, do most people even know what a wiggler is what what is whittling to begin with, will of course it's carving something out of a piece of wood using in most cases you would say a penknife although the wiggler's in Mormon history tended to use something a little larger than a penknife now. The tanners talk about this on page 538 of the book Mormonism shadow or reality, and they have a few quotes in there that show that these wet learners really did exist, but what were they trying to accomplish the tanners site all over. Be Huntington who recorded the following in his journal that we should mention all of her B Huntington is what we would say is a friendly is not an enemy of the church so you can't say will.

This is just an enemy trying to make the church look bad. He's a friendly, here is a member.

He said I belonged to the whittling society, and 6 April helped whittle Dr. Charles of Warsaw.

This would be Warsaw, Illinois out of town. No one liked the site of half dozen large knives whittling about their ears and not a word said about that gives us an idea of what they were doing but there still seems to be a lot of question marks about that.

So the tanners included another citation from John Taylor who they say became the third president of the Mormon church you made these statements quoting and that state robbed us of the rights of freemen, and the only chance we had. Then when they sent their scamps anaerobes among us was to have a whittling society and whittle them out.

We could not get them out according to law, and we had to do it according to justice and there was no law against whittling so we whittled the scoundrels out Taylor goes on to say, I remember that one of the legislators who had an old or charter named Dr. Charles by the way, is the one that all of her B Huntington mentions as well.

He went to Pres. Young and says he Mr. Young. I am very much imposed upon by the people around here. There are a lot of boys following me with long knives and they are whittling after me where ever I go. My life is in danger. The tanners also include Brigham Young's response where he basically tells Dr. Charles your cause is just. But we can do nothing for you. So what is going on here.

Apparently if there was someone that the Mormons disliked and did not want in their community.

A group of them which surround that individual when he was seen in public, and rather than say anything to that individual.

They would pull out a piece of wood and these long knives as described here, and they would whittle this piece of wood in their hands, not saying a word that would you feel a little bit intimidated Eric. If a number of people surrounded you doing just that and not saying anything in the doesn't say what their countenance look like. I'm sure they didn't have smiles on their face unless it was maybe a sinister smile. Perhaps I can imagine that that would probably not be a comfortable situation. I think you're looking at exit stage left and are you going to want to remain in a community where they are in essence threatening violence against you with those knives and if that really happened, I would say that's probably something people should know and I am just disappointed that Mr. Turner didn't take advantage of this space that he had to write this chapter to give several examples showing how the Mormon church itself and the people within the Mormon church were always as peaceable as they often lead on and I think you're exactly right. We just given a few of the examples that he could have talked about and written moron, but I think when we get to the Thomas Lewis affair that is really an obscure case that happened actually in Sanpete County here in Utah but not many people know about it and I think a lot of people could distance themselves from Thomas Lewis from that whole affair because, well, how do we know that there were any officials from Salt Lake City with the LDS church actually involved in that. Will I think what what Turner's going to try and show because apparently he's done a lot of research in this Thomas Lewis story and I think he's using the space that was provided for him to just let people know. Hey, I've done a lot of research on this I think is research is good but I don't know if it really fits in my opinion, the storyline of the book.

In other words, let's critique the essay.

Let's look at what it says and let's show examples to that either supports what the essay is saying or perhaps even contradicts with the SAS thing but just one more point though when he talks about this idea of the controversy surrounding the temple endowment ceremony in which initiates promise to pray that God would avenge the deaths of Joseph and Hiram Smith upon the United States. Now this was known as the oath of vengeance. It was a part of the Mormon temple endowment ceremony up until the early 1930s were not just talking 19th century here and basically what people in the temple were told to Val was, if they had an opportunity they would take vengeance on those who harmed Joseph and Hiram Smith. This is actually taking place with Brigham Young in the Naboo endowment in 1845 that soon after the death of Joseph Smith in 1844.

This is what the oath of vengeance that you and each of you do covenant and promise that you will pray and never cease to pray to Almighty God to avenge the blood of the prophets upon this nation and that you will teach the same to your children and to your children's children, unto the third and fourth generation. Now, even though they were supposed to teach their children and their children's children to the third and fourth generation. Most latter-day Saints, probably not even aware that an oath of vengeance even existed in the temple endowment ceremony. But again, as I said, these are some really good subjects that I wish Mr. Turner had elaborated on but as we said he's going to turn his attention to this violent act that was made against a man by the name of Thomas Lewis and were going to talk about that tomorrow show.

Thank you for listening. If you would like more information regarding his research ministry.

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