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Truthfulness of the Revelations - Insight Into D&C 67
TitleTruthfulness of the Revelations - Insight Into D&C 67
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsBlack, Susan Easton
Book TitleRestoration Voices Volume 2: Insights and Stories of the Doctrine and Covenants
Volume2
Number of Volumes2
Chapter67
PublisherBook of Mormon Central
CitySpringville, UT

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Truthfulness of the Revelations

D&C 67:6–7

 

At the November 1831 conference of elders held in the John Johnson home at Hiram, Ohio, “some negative conversation was had concerning the language used in the revelations” (D&C 67: Introduction). “The wisest man [William McLellin], in his own estimation,” wrote the Prophet Joseph Smith, “having more learning than sense, endeavored to write a commandment like unto one of the least of the Lord’s, but failed.”[1]

Elders who “witnessed this vain attempt of a man to imitate the language of Jesus Christ, renewed their faith in the fulness of the gospel and in the truth of the commandments and revelations which the Lord had given to the Church through my instrumentality,” wrote Joseph. They then “signified a willingness to bear testimony of their truth to all the world.”[2] The elders who so signified were Joseph Smith, Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, John Whitmer, Peter Whitmer Jr., Sidney Rigdon, William E. McLellin, Orson Hyde, Luke Johnson, and Lyman E. Johnson.[3]

The following “Testimony of the Witnesses” was then revealed to the Prophet Joseph:

The testimony of the witnesses to the book of the Lord’s commandments, which he gave to his church through Joseph Smith, Jnr, who was appointed by the voice of the church for that this purpose: we therefore feel willing to bear testimony to all the world of mankind, to every creature upon the face of <all> the earth, and upon the islands of the sea, that the Lord has borne record to our souls, through the Holy Ghost shed forth upon us, that these commandments were given by inspiration of God, and are profitable for all men, and are verily true. We give this testimony unto the world, the Lord being our helper: and it is through the grace of God, the Father, and his Son Jesus Christ, that we are permitted to have this privilege of bearing this testimony unto the world, that the children of men may be profited thereby.[4]

This “Testimony of the Witnesses” was intended to be printed in the Book of Commandments with the names of the elders present at the November 1831 conference. It is assumed that the “Testimony of the Witnesses” was included with the revelations carried to Missouri to be printed as the Book of Commandments. Due to the destruction of the press on which the Book of Commandments was being printed, whether or not the “Testimony of the Witnesses” was printed is unknown.

It is significant that the “Testimony of the Twelve Apostles to the Truth of the Book of Doctrine and Covenants” is printed and included in each copy of the Doctrine and Covenants.

[1] History, 1838–1856, volume A-1 [23 December 1805–30 August 1834], 162–163. Joseph Smith Papers.

[2] History, 1838–1856, 162–163.

[3] “Minutes of a conference held in Hiram, Portage Co Ohio, Nov 1 1831,” in Donald Q. Cannon and Lyndon W. Cook, ed., Far West Record: Minutes of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830–1844 (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1983), 26–27.

[4] History, 1838–1856, 162–163.

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Scripture Reference

Doctrine and Covenants 67:6-7

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