why did joseph smith create mormonism
John A. Widtsoe. Another of Smith’s plural wives—whose marriage to Smith was followed, within a few weeks, by that of her sister—later explained that these marriages were “too sacred to be talked about.” Such furtiveness makes it difficult to track the development of the doctrine, much less Smith’s theological justification for it. He… Joseph Smith. Some historians, including Park, believe that he took his first plural wife in April, 1841, though whenever it happened, he did not tell Emma, and it was some time before she learned the truth. Many denominations came and went during the proliferation of faith and fanaticism that characterized the Second Great Awakening. Yet, it may be worth while to examine into the widespread theory of anti-Mormon writers that Joseph wrote the book and that he stole his … One of them called for posthumous baptism, through which Mormons could baptize a living person as a proxy for someone already deceased. ♦. Park’s access to these minutes is part of what makes “Kingdom of Nauvoo” so illuminating. This was in 1827, during the Second Great Awakening, when charismatic preachers were stoking religious fires around the country. 3. … Smith’s ensuing campaign was not so much a vanity project as an attempt to advocate for a more assertive federal government and a stronger executive branch, making the case that the Union should intervene against the states whenever the rights of minorities were threatened. Get book recommendations, fiction, poetry, and dispatches from the world of literature in your in-box. In a state where a few hundred votes could determine the outcome of an election, particularly at the county and congressional levels, the thousands of active and enfranchised Mormons became a sought-after constituency. Joseph Smith was a hugely important figure who sought inspiration and understanding of the will of God, but he still remains one of the most enigmatic figures in religious history. All Rights Reserved. In Nauvoo, Illinois, Smith established a theocracy, ran for President, and tested the limits of religious freedom. He no longer believes, but he still wonders about stuff like this, obviously. I have more to boast of than ever any man had. This presumable fact can be demonstrated by a careful examination of these 20 distinctive teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. True? Emma tried to marshal resistance among women through the Church’s all-female Relief Society; in response, Smith tried to stifle the organization. Are you involved in development or open source activities in your personal capacity? “Persecution has rolled upon our heads from time to time, from portions of the United States, like peals of thunder, because of our religion,” Smith lamented, after announcing his candidacy. “Honey, it’s Lorna from next door. Some supporters had proposed giving the religion its own sovereign reservation, like those that had recently been designated for Native Americans; opponents of the faith advocated, outright, for the extermination of its adherents. The Council sent missionaries south and west, to see about resettlement, and Smith, in his Presidential platform, called for the annexation of Texas from Mexico, suggesting that the sale of the nation’s public lands could be used to buy the freedom of enslaved persons around the country, thereby ending slavery and promoting Manifest Destiny at the same time. The documents offer new insights into Smith’s decision to run for President, a campaign that exasperated authorities in Illinois and in Missouri and drew criticism of the Mormons from around the country. These immigrants were supposed to have been fair skinned. In Reynolds v. U.S. (1879), the Justices ruled that the free-exercise clause did not protect plural marriage, and that a federal law banning polygamy was constitutional. But self-declared prophets seldom sit well with the political establishment, and, almost immediately, Smith and his adherents got into trouble with the law. The material on this site can not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Multiply. Smith apparently collected these plates, took them home, and subsequently translated them into the Book of Mormon which he then published in 1830. It starts to become clear when you find out that Joseph Smith became a Freemason and went through the Masonic temple ceremonies about 2 months before he came up with the LDS Temple ceremonies. Smith finished the transcription by 1830 and found a printer who agreed to run off five thousand copies. Sign up for the Books & Fiction newsletter. How Joseph Smith and the Early Mormons Challenged American Democracy. At a time when Mormonism is booming, the Church is struggling with a troubled legacy. The arrest stemmed not from forces outside Nauvoo but from forces within it: William Law, the excommunicated leader who founded a rival church, had, with a group of other dissenters, begun publishing a newspaper, which accused Smith of polygamy and detailed the ways in which he was supposedly dangerous to American democracy. Aggrieved but also entitled, they carried four hundred and eighty-one individual petitions for reparations from harm suffered in state-sanctioned violence, demanding compensation for everything from lost livestock to lost husbands. And in view of these things, I feel it to be my right and privilege to obtain what influence and power I can, lawfully, in the United States, for the protection of injured innocence.”. ), Smith had queried the five other Presidential candidates before deciding to run. Mormonism. Church members believe that Joseph was led to a hill near Palmyra, New York, where he received an ancient record from an angel known as Moroni. The tensions that they experienced—between the right to religious freedom and the limits of religious tolerance—still persist today. Ignoring the criticisms of the surrounding secular authorities, he began to “marry for eternity” more than a dozen women, seven of whom had also been “M.E.” to Smith, while also organizing the Mormon vote for county elections. (This was the military experience he would boast about during his Presidential campaign; he later added to his résumé a term as Nauvoo’s mayor.).
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