Mormon Sermon Commencing Blood Atonement Murder - 9/21/1856
Jedediah M. Grant, September 21, 1856
Remarks by President J. M. Grant, Delivered in the Bowery,
Great Salt Lake City, September 21, 1856.
(critique notes follows the sermon)
feel that the remarks which we have heard this morning are true, and
they apply directly to you who are now present, and to the inhabitants
of this city and of the Territory generally, and we do not excuse any
of you. (1)
If the arrows of the Almighty ought to be thrown
at you we want to do it, and to make you feel and realize that we mean
you. And although we talk of the old clay's being ground in the mill,
we do not mean it to apply to some other place, for we have enough here
who have been dried ever since their baptism, and many of them are
cracked and spoiling. (2)
Some have received the Priesthood and a
knowledge of the things of God, and still they dishonor the cause of
truth, commit adultery, and every other abomination beneath the
heavens, and then meet you here or in the street, and deny it. (3)
These are the abominable characters that we have
in our midst, and they will seek unto wizards that peep, and to
star-gazers and soothsayers, because they have no faith in the holy
Priesthood, and then when they meet us, they want to be called Saints. (4)
The same characters will get drunk and wallow in
the mire and filth, and yet they call themselves Saints, and seem to
glory in their conduct, and they pride themselves in their greatness
and in their abominations. (5)
They are the old hardened sinners, and are
almost - if not altogether - past improvement, and are full of hell,
and my prayer is that God's indignation may rest upon them, and that He
will curse them from the crown of their heads to the soles of their
I say, that there are men and women that I would
advise to go to the President immediately, and ask him to appoint a
committee to attend to their case; and then let a place be selected,
and let that committee shed their blood. (7)
We have those amongst us that are full of all
manner of abominations, those who need to have their blood shed, for
water will not do, their sins are of too deep a dye. (8)
You may think that I am not teaching you Bible
doctrine, but what says the apostle Paul? I would ask how many covenant
breakers there are in this city and in this kingdom. I believe that
there are a great many; and if they are covenant breakers we need a
place designated, where we can shed their blood. (9)
Talk about old clay; I would rather have clay
from a new bank than some that we have had clogging the wheels for the
last nineteen years. They are a perfect nuisance, and I want them cut
off, and the sooner it is done the better. (10)
We have men who are incessantly finding fault,
who get up a little party spirit, and criticise the conduct of men of
God. They will find fault with this, that, and the other, and nothing
is right for them, because they are full of all kinds of filth and
And we have women here who like anything but the
celestial law of God; and if they could break asunder the cable of the
Church of Christ, there is scarcely a mother in Israel but would do it
this day. And they talk it to their husbands, to their daughters, and
to their neighbors, and say they have not seen a week's happiness since
they became acquainted with that law, or since their husbands took a
second wife. They want to break up the Church of God, and to break it
from their husbands and from their family connections. (12)
Then, again, there are men that are used as
tools by their wives, and they are just a little better in appearance
and in their habits than a little black boy. They live in filth and
nastiness, they eat it and drink it, and they are filthy all over. We
have Elders and High Priests that are precisely in this predicament,
and yet they are wishing for more of the Holy Ghost, they wish to have
it in larger doses. They want more revelation, but I tell you that you
now have more than you live up to, more than you practise and make use
If I hurt your feelings let them be hurt. And if
any of you ask, do I mean you? I answer, yes. If any woman asks, do I
mean her? I answer, yes. And I want you to understand that I am
throwing the arrows of God Almighty among Israel; I do not excuse any. (14)
I am speaking to you in the name of Israel's
God, and you need to be baptized and washed clean from your sins, from
your backslidings, from your apostacies, from your filthiness, from
your lying, from your swearing, from your lusts, and from every thing
that is evil before the God of Israel. (15)
We have been trying long enough with this
people, and I go in for letting the sword of the Almighty be
unsheathed, not only in word, but in deed. I go in for letting the
wrath of the Almighty burn up the dross and the filth; and if the
people will not glorify the Lord by sanctifying themselves, let the
wrath of the Almighty God burn against them, and the wrath of Joseph
and of Brigham, and of Heber, and of high heaven. (16)
There is nothing to prevent you from being
humble and doing right, but your own little, foolish, and wicked acts
and doings. I will just tell you that if an angel of God were to pass
Great Salt Lake City, while you are in your present state, he would not
consider you worthy of his company. (17)
You have got to cleanse yourselves from
corruption, before you are fit for the society of those beings. You may
hear of people in other cities being baptized and renewing their
covenants, but they are not sinners above all others; and except the
inhabitants of Great Salt Lake City repent, and do their first works,
they shall all likewise perish, and the wrath of God will be upon them
and round about them. (18)
You can scarcely find a place in this city that
is not full of filth and abominations; and if you would search them
out, they would easily be weighed in the balances, and you would then
find that they do not serve their God, and purify their bodies. But the
course they are taking leads them to corrupt themselves, the soil, the
waters, and the mountains, and they defile everything around them. (19)
Brethren and sisters, we want you to repent and
forsake your sins. And you who have committed sins that cannot be
forgiven through baptism, let your blood be shed, and let the smoke
ascend, that the incense thereof may come up before God as an atonement
for your sins, and that the sinners in Zion may be afraid. (20)
These are my feelings, and may God fulfil them.
And my wishes are that He will grant the desires of my brethren, that
Zion may be purified, and the wicked purged out of her, until God shall
say I will bless the rest; until He shall say I will bless your flocks,
your herds, your little ones, your houses, your lands, and all that you
possess; and you shall be my people, and I will come and take up my
abode with you, and I will bless all those that do right; which may He
grant, in the name of Jesus. Amen. (21)
Critique of sermon delivered by Jedediah M. Grant on September 21, 1856
1) 19th century Mormons were in rebellion to the United States of America and preaching treason.
We are invaded by hostile forces (United States Army),
who are evidently assailing us to accomplish our overthrow and
destruction. Brigham Young’s proclamation delivered on September 15,
2) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was filled with murderous ungodly people.
Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things
in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you,
live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but
rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I
will repay,” says the Lord. Romans 12:17-19.
3) 19th century Mormons were ungodly as they thought the truth was in a bogus priesthood instead of Jesus Christ.
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6.
4) 19th century Mormons were ungodly as they had placed their faith in a bogus priesthood instead of Jesus Christ.
Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the
excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have
suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may
gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which
is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the
righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the
power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being
conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the
resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3:8-11.
5) 19th century Mormons were ungodly as they were not Christian Saints.
To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who
are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in
every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and
ours: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus
Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:2-3.
6) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was ignorant of the love and grace of God in Jesus Christ.
But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior
toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done,
but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of
regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us
abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified
by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal
life. Titus 3:4-7.
7) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was filled with murderous ungodly people.
For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,”
“You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear
false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other
commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love
your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore
love is the fulfillment of the law. Romans 13:9-10.
8) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was filled with murderous ungodly people.
For He who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said,
“Do not murder.”Now if you do not commit adultery, but you do murder,
you have become a transgressor of the law. So speak and so do as those
who will be judged by the law of liberty. For judgment is without mercy
to the one who has shown no mercy. Mercy triumphs over judgment. James
9) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was filled with murderous debased people.
And even as they did not like to retain God in their
knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things
which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual
immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy,
murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers,
backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil
things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving,
unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God,
that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do
the same but also approve of those who practice them. Romans 1:28-32.
10) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was actually an enemy to God.
Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they
not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You
lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight
and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not
receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your
pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship
with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a
friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. James 4:1-4.
11) False Christians will never receive correction for their gross conduct.
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be
zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone
hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with
him, and he with Me. Revelation 3:19-20.
12) Polygamy strains family relationships and is against the will of God.
And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, scoffing.
Therefore she said to Abraham, “Cast out this bondwoman
and her son; for the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my
son, namely with Isaac.” And the matter was very displeasing in
Abraham’s sight because of his son. But God said to Abraham, “Do not
let it be displeasing in your sight because of the lad or because of
your bondwoman. Whatever Sarah has said to you, listen to her voice;
for in Isaac your seed shall be called.” Genesis 21:9-12.
13) Mormons were ungodly as they did not have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are
called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These
are the true sayings of God.” And I fell at his feet to worship him.
But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow
servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship
God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Revelation
14) 19th century Mormon hierarchy was filled with children of the devil.
In this the children of God and the children of the
devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of
God, nor is he who does not love his brother. 11For this is the message
that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another,
12not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And
why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s
righteous. 1 John 3:10-12.
15) Baptism is not the Christian Gospel and does not wash away your sins.
For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach
the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should
be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to
those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power
of God. 1 Corinthians 1:17-18.
16) Brigham Young, Heber Kimball, and Jedediah Grant are experiencing hell fire.
“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You
shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the
judgment.’ But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother
without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to
his brother, ‘RacaRaca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever
says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire.” Matthew 5:21-22.
17) 19th century Mormons were violent religious fanatics in rebellion against the United States of America.
Since my arrival within the limits of the Territory, I
regret to have found that many acts of violence have been committed on
the highways, in the destruction and robbing of propherty belonging to
the United States. These acts which indicate that the Terrority is in a
state of rebellion, are ascribed, how truly I do not know, to yourself.
Governor Cumming’s letter to Brigham Young dated November 21, 1857.
18) 19th century Mormons were violent religious fanatics in rebellion against the United States of America.
A proclamation, purporting to have emanated from the
late Governor, a commission to Joseph Taylor signed D.H. Wells, and
various depositions taken by Judge Eckels, all exhibit a rebellious
spirit on the part of the leaders of the people, and the audacious acts
of violence committed on the highways, plainly indicate that no
inconsiderable portion of the masses sympathize with the insane
movements of their leaders. I will use all honorable means in my power
for the suppressing this effort of deluded fanatics to disturb the
peace of our country. Governor Cumming’s letter to Secretary of State
Lewis Cass dated November 28, 1857.
19) 19th century Mormons were violent religious fanatics in rebellion against the United States of America.
Marshall P.K. Dotson has this day requested me to place
such a posse under his command as will enable him to serve writs upon
Brigham Young and sixty-six others indicted for treason and other
felonies by the Grand Jury in Green River County, Utah Territory.
Please inform me whether you can furnish the military posse, if
specifically demanded by Marshall P.K. Dotson. Governor Cumming’s
letter to General Johnston dated May 25, 1858.
20) 19th century Mormon blood atonement was an anti-Christ doctrine.
This is the message which we have heard from Him and
declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If
we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie
and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in
the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus
Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. 1 John 1:5-7.
21) God will never bless murderous religious fanatics.
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for
theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they
shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the
earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for
they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain
mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are
the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. Blessed are those
who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil
against you falsely for My sake.” Matthew 5:3-11.
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