Changes in the Doctrine and Covenants – Part 3
By: Dr. Thomas Figart
|By: Marvin W. Cowan; ©2013|
|Mormonism’s founder, Joseph Smith, declared, “From sundry revelations which had been received (by him), it was apparent that many important points touching the salvation of men, had been taken from the Bible, or lost before it was compiled.” That is a serious charge but Smith and other LDS leaders use it to try to prove there is a need for the new LDS “scriptures.” They also claim that the Bible has been corrupted by errors in translation and by deliberate changes made by careless, unscrupulous scribes who also deleted or lost at least 20 books from it.|
Changes in the Doctrine & Covenants – Part 3
This article quotes Joseph Smith’s “revelations” were first published in the 1833 Book of Commandments (B. of C.) but many were changed two years later when published in the 1835 Doctrine & Covenants (D. & C.). This article quotes the D. & C. and inserts the words that were deleted from the B. of C. in bold type with a line drawn through them and italicizes and highlights the words added in the D. & C. that were not in the B. of C. all of D. & C. Sec. 5 so readers can see all of the changes. Future articles will only quote parts of D. & C. Sections that were changed. D. & C. Section 5 has 35 verses and was in B. of C. chapter 4 where it had 11 longer verses. The D. & C. verse numbers are included in this article to make it easier to locate the changes. Notice how the meaning in verse 4 is changed. In addition to all the other changes, verses 18 and 19 have completely different content.
Here is D. & C. Sec. 5: “1. Behold, I say unto you, that my servant Martin Harris has desired a witness from at my hand, that you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., has have got the things plates of which he you have testified and borne record that he you has have received of me; 2. And now, behold, this shall you say to him–he who spake unto you, said unto you: I, the Lord, am God, and I have given these things unto you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and I have commanded him you that he you should stand as a witness of these things; 3. Nevertheless And I have caused that he you should enter into a covenant with me, that he you should not show them except to those persons to whom I commanded him you; and he you has have no power over them except I grant it unto him you. 4. And he you has have a gift to translate the book plates; and this is the first gift that I bestowed upon you; and I have commanded him that he you shall should pretend to no other gift until my purpose is fulfilled in this; for I will grant you no other gift until it is finished. 5. And Verily I say unto you, that wo woe shall come unto the inhabitants of the earth if they will not harken unto my words. 6. For hereafter you shall be ordained and go forth and deliver my words unto the children of men. 7. For, Behold, if they will not believe my words, they would not believe you, my servant Joseph, if it were possible that he you could should show them all these things which I have committed unto you. 8. Oh, ye this unbelieving, ye and stiffnecked generation—mine anger is kindled against you them.”
“9. Behold, verily I say unto you, I have reserved the those things of which I have spoken, which I have intrusted entrusted to unto you, my servant Joseph, for a wise purpose in me, and it shall be made known unto future generations; 10. But this generation shall have my words word through you; 11. Yea and in addition to your testimony, the testimony of three of my servants, whom I shall call and ordain, unto whom I will show these things, and they shall go forth with my words unto this generation that are given through you. 12. Yea, three they shall know of a surety that these things are true, for from heaven will I declare it unto them. 13. I will give them power that they may behold and view these things as they are; 14. And to none else will I grant this power, to receive the same testimony among this generation, in the beginning of the rising up and coming forth of my church out of the wilderness—clear as the moon, as fair as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners. 15. And the testimony of the three witnesses will I send forth and of my word. 16. And behold, whosoever believeth in on my words, will I visit with the manifestation of my Spirit; and they shall be born of me, even of water and of the Spirit—17. And you must wait yet a little while, for ye are not yet ordained—18. And their testimony shall also go forth. 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 priestcrafts, and envyings, and strifes, and idolatries, and sorceries, and all manner of iniquities, and I will establish my church, like unto the church which was taught by my disciples in the days of old. And now if this generation do harden their hearts against my word, behold I will deliver them up unto Satan, for he reigneth and hath much power at this time, for he hath got great hold upon the hearts of the people of this generation: and not far from the iniquities of Sodom and Gomorrah, do they come at this time: behold the sword of justice hangeth over their heads, and if they persist in the hardness of their hearts, the time cometh that it must fall upon them. 19. For a desolating scourge shall go forth among the inhabitants of the earth and shall continue to be poured out from time to time, if they repent not, until the earth is empty, and the inhabitants thereof are consumed away and utterly destroyed by the brightness of my coming.”
“20. Behold, I tell you these things even as I also told the people of the destruction of Jerusalem and my word shall be verified at this time as it hath hitherto been verified. 21. And now I command you, my servant Joseph, to repent and walk more uprightly before me, and to yield to the persuasions of men no more; 22. And that he you be firm in keeping the commandments wherewith I have commanded him you; and if he you do this, behold I grant unto him you eternal life, even if he you should be slain. 23. And now, I speak again, I speak unto you, my servant Joseph, concerning the man that desireth desires the witness — 24. Behold, I say unto him, he exalteth exalts himself and doth does not humble himself sufficiently before me; but if he will go out and bow down before me, and humble himself in mighty prayer and faith, in the sincerity of his heart, then will I grant unto him a view of the things which he desireth desires to know see. 25. And then he shall say unto the people of this generation: Behold, I have seen the things which the Lord hath shown unto Joseph Smith, Jun., and I know of a surety that they are true, for I have seen them, and for they have been shown unto me by the power of God and not of man. 26. And I the Lord command him, my servant Martin Harris, that he shall say no more unto them concerning these things, except he shall say: I have seen them, and they have been shown unto me by the power of God; and these are the words which he shall say. 27. But if he deny this he will break the covenant which he has before covenanted with me, and behold, he is condemned. 28. And now, except he humble himself and acknowledge unto me the things that he has done which are wrong, and covenant with me that he will keep my commandments, and exercise faith in me, behold, I say unto him, he shall have no such views of the things of which I have spoken. 29. And if this be the case, I command him you, my servant Joseph, that you shall say unto him, that he shall do no more nor trouble me any more concerning this matter. 30. And if this be the case, behold, I say unto you thee Joseph, when thou hast translated a few more pages thou shalt stop for a season, even until I command thee again; then thou mayest translate again. 31. And except thou do this, behold, thou shalt have no more gift, and I will take away the things which I have intrusted entrusted with thee. 32. An now, because I foresee the lying in wait to destroy thee, yea, I foresee that if my servant Martin Harris humbleth not himself and receive a witness from my hand that he will fall into transgression; 33. And there are many that lie in wait to destroy thee from off the face of the earth; and for this cause, that thy days may be prolonged, I have given unto thee these commandments. 34. Yea, for this cause I have said; Stop, and stand still until I command thee, and I will provide means whereby thou mayest accomplish the thing which I have commanded thee. 35. And if thou art faithful in keeping my commandments, thou shalt be lifted up at the last day. Amen.”
Those interested in more comparisons of the Book of Commandments with the Doctrine & Covenants can “Google” the Book of Commandments and find a site that does that. We will look at more changes in the Doctrine & Covenants next time.