D&C 10. Part 6. Verses 42-70.
February 28, 2011 9 Comments
Part 5 is here.
The earliest text for verses 1-41 of D&C 10 is the Book of Commandments. However, an earlier copy of verses 42-70 is found in Revelation Book 1 (the Book of Commandments and Revelations ms published in the opening volume of the Joseph Smith Papers’ Revelations and Translations series). The RB 1 dates this entry to April 1829. But there may be reasons to think of it as somewhat later than this.
|Revelation Book 1||1835 Doctrine and Covenants (with current versification)|
Shall publish it as the Record of Nephi, & thus I will confound those
42 And behold, you shall publish it as the record of Nephi; and thus I will confound those who have altered my words.
43 I will not suffer that they shall destroy my work; yea, I will show unto them that my wisdom is greater than the cunning of the devil.
44 Behold, they have only got a part, or an abridgment of the account of Nephi.
45 Behold, there are many things engraven upon the plates of Nephi which do throw greater views upon my gospel; therefore, it is wisdom in me that you should translate this first part of the engravings of Nephi, and send forth in this work.
46 And, behold, all the remainder of this work does contain all those parts of my gospel which my holy prophets, yea, and also my disciples, desired in their prayers should come forth unto this people.
47 And I said unto them, that it should be granted unto them according to their faith in their prayers;
48 Yea, and this was their faith—that my gospel, which I gave unto them that they might preach in their days, might come unto their brethren the Lamanites, and also all that had become Lamanites because of their dissensions.
now this is not all^
49 Now, this is not all—their faith in their prayers was that this gospel should be made known also, if it were possible that other nations should possess this land;
50 And thus they did leave a blessing upon this land in their prayers, that whosoever should believe in this gospel in this land might have eternal life;
51 Yea, that it might be free unto all of whatsoever nation, kindred, tongue, or people they may be.
52 And now, behold, according to their faith in their prayers will I bring this part of my gospel to the knowledge of my people. Behold, I do not bring it to destroy that which they have received, but to build it up.
& for this cause have I said, if this generation harden not their hearts, I will establish my Church among them. now I do not say this to destroy my Church, but I say this to build up my Church: therefore, whosoever belongeth to my Church need not fe
53 And for this cause have I said: If this generation harden not their hearts, I will establish my church among them.
54 Now I do not say this to destroy my church, but I say this to build up my church;
55 Therefore, whosoever belongeth to my church need not fear, for such shall inherit the kingdom of heaven.
56 But it is they who do not fear me, neither keep my commandments but build up churches unto themselves to get gain, yea, and all those that do wickedly and build up the kingdom of the devil—yea, verily, verily, I say unto you, that it is they that I will disturb, and cause to tremble and shake to the center.
Behold I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God: I came unto my own, & my own received Me not. I am the light which shineth in darkness & the darkness comprehendeth it not. I am he
57 Behold, I am Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I came unto mine own, and mine own received me not.
58 I am the light which shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not.
59 I am he who said—Other sheep have I which are not of this fold—unto my disciples, and many there were that understood me not.
60 And I will show unto this people that I had other sheep, and that they were a branch of the house of Jacob;
61 And I will bring to light their marvelous works, which they did in my name;
yea, & I will also bring to light my Gospel, which was m
62 Yea, and I will also bring to light my gospel which was ministered unto them, and, behold, they shall not deny that which you have received, but they shall build it up, and shall bring to light the true points of my doctrine, yea, and the only doctrine which is in me.
63 And this I do that I may establish my gospel, that there may not be so much contention; yea, Satan doth stir up the hearts of the people to contention concerning the points of my doctrine; and in these things they do err, for they do wrest the scriptures and do not understand them.
64 Therefore, I will unfold unto them this great mystery;
65 For, behold, I will gather them as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, if they will not harden their hearts;
yea, if they will come, they may^
66 Yea, if they will come, they may, and partake of the waters of life freely.
67 Behold, this is my doctrine—whosoever repenteth and cometh unto me, the same is my church.
68 Whosoever declareth more or less than this, the same is not of me, but is against me; therefore he is not of my church.
69 And now, behold, whosoever is of my church, and endureth of my church to the end, him will I establish upon my rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them.
70 And now, remember the words of him who is the life and light of the world, your Redeemer, your Lord and your God. Amen.
Among the many interesting features of this text are the “accidentals” involving capitalization. This near German fetish is tamed in the 1833 Book of Commandments and later versions but it suggests that the original bore this kind of imprint. The capitalization of nouns in English imprints follows a trend of steep increase during the first part of the 18th century but then experiences a fairly rapid decline after about 1750. But letters written over the next decades demonstrate a much smaller decline in the practice. Moreover, capitalization of verbs was quite common in handwritten text. (In many cases, writers habitually capitalized certain initial letters at virtually every instance.) Early Joseph Smith holographs show him to frequently use capitalized nouns. I haven’t studied this carefully, but I think at least a portion of this revelation may reflect Joseph Smith’s writing. Other early scribes may be responsible for it but Oliver Cowdery and Sidney Rigdon don’t seem prone to this. Naturally, Emma Smith is a possible candidate.
Verses 53-56 reference a more strident passage in a March 1829 revelation (the text was somewhat modified in BC and eliminated from D&C 5): “And thus if the People of this Generation harden not their hearts I will work a reformation among them and I will put down all lyings and deceivings and Priestcraft and envyings and strifes and Idolatries and sorceries and all manner of Iniquities and I will establish my Church yea even the Church which was taught by my Desciples and now if this Generation do harden their hearts against my words Behold I will deliver them up unto Satan for he reigneth and hath power at this time for he hath got great hold upon the hearts of the People of this Generation and how far from the iniquities of Sodom and Gomorrah do they come at this time and Behold the Sword of justice doth hang above their heads and if they persist in the hardness of their hearts the time cometh that it must fall upon them”
Language from a large segment of this portion is clearly reminiscent of the Book of Mormon and particularly 3 Nephi.
The view of a Church as a kind of non-denominational entity but with the promise of future evolution may situate the revelation at the end of the translation period, a kind of review of already effected procedure. In any case, the Protestant view of “the church” here is interesting and mirrors Sidney Rigdon’s arrival revelation: D&C 35. The “church of the wilderness” was a not unknown metaphor among Methodists and others though applied in a different way. In short, this revelation is one of the most interesting in Joseph Smith’s corpus.
In part 7, we’ll look at some of the dating arguments outlined so far and consider Max Parkin’s early work on the subject.
As a wrap-up in part 8, we will summarize some of the environmental aspects of the revelation. Then we pick a new section. Any requests?
 Newel K. Whitney collection, LTPSC, handwriting unidentified. The pattern of accidentals is like that of RB 1 D&C 10. Cp. the text of BC chapter 4.