Jump to content

False Statement in D&C Section Heading?


consiglieri

Recommended Posts

Reading through the Doctrine and Covenants with my 14-year old seminary student, I came upon something last night that made me uncomfortable.

Having received assurances from God that He would fight their battles, Joseph Smith led Zion's Camp to Missouri to restore the saints to their lands in Jackson County.

Upon their arrival, Joseph Smith received a difficult revelation, now canonized as section 105, calling for Zion's Camp to disband without engaging the enemy.

My issue is with the language of the heading of section 105, which not only does not mention the real purpose of Zion's Camp, but appears to actually mischaracterize their mission as "bringing clothing and provisions."

This seems to me to be tantamount to false advertising.

Below is the section in its entirety with the relevant portion highlighted.

Does this cause anybody else heartburn?

What are your thoughts?

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

Section 105

Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet, on Fishing River, Missouri, 22 June 1834 (see History of the Church, 2:108

Link to comment

Yeah, not the best heading ever written.

I don't think it's meant to be misleading, because a simple reading of the text under it explains what was really going on. There would be no reason to use the heading to mislead if you knew that the sentences right under the heading were going to undo all your efforts. Especially when you've also just provided a reference to the event from the History of Church which would further negate your efforts.

I think it's just plain bad descriptive writing.

Link to comment

Yes, this is obviously a poorly executed attempt at a cover-up. Somebody needs to alert Salt Lake City that the gig is up. :P

Why is it whenever a facially obvious attempt at a cover-up is revealed, some Mormons think a satisfactory answer is to call it "poorly executed"?

As if only a "well executed" cover-up is worthy of disapprobation.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

Link to comment

Why is it whenever a facially obvious attempt at a cover-up is revealed, some Mormons think a satisfactory answer is to call it "poorly executed"?

As if only a "well executed" cover-up is worthy of disapprobation.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

:P

Ok, now that I've picked myself up off the floor . . .

Seriously? First of all, I was being totally sarcastic. I don't think it was an attempt at a cover-up at all. Bluebell is probably right that it is simply a poor description of what was going on. I mean, get our your History of the Chruch and read the description of Zion's Camp. This is not an affair that the Church has tried to "cover up."

But really, if were a "well-executed" cover-up, would it be facially obvious? Would it be obvious at all? Would anyone know anything about it? Excuse me for being this way, but if it was facially obvious, then it was poorly executed, no?

Departure of the Prophet from Kirtland for Missouri

May 5.

Link to comment

I agree with Bluebell... why would anyone purposely try to write a misleading opening statement when the actual statements following clearly state something different, as well as several other descriptions of the whole Zions Camp event. Note Mark's quote above...

GG

Link to comment

;)

Ok, now that I've picked myself up off the floor . . .

Seriously? First of all, I was being totally sarcastic. I don't think it was an attempt at a cover-up at all. Bluebell is probably right that it is simply a poor description of what was going on. I mean, get our your History of the Chruch and read the description of Zion's Camp. This is not an affair that the Church has tried to "cover up."

But really, if were a "well-executed" cover-up, would it be facially obvious? Would it be obvious at all? Would anyone know anything about it? Excuse me for being this way, but if it was facially obvious, then it was poorly executed, no?

I told our friend when he posted the same post on another board, to check the history of church pages. It looks like you did and it did confirm the introduction. Or perhaps I am missing something. :P

Link to comment

Heavens, here we go again with this guy.... :P

It doesn't say that "clothing and provisions" was their "mission", it simply states that as a part of their mission they also brought clothing and provisions.

In case you haven't noticed Consig, chapter headings no matter the scriptures sometimes add additional info that the text doesn't address per-se or isn't the main point of the text. Stuff like that happens. There are all kinds of bad chapter headings in the scriptures, be it the Bible or any other. Sorry to tell you, but it's nothing "sinister" nor "dishonest". It's simply human nuance.

Always have to see negative instead of reality don't you Consig? ;)

Link to comment

I am not a big fan of any of the chapter prefaces in the Standard Works. Some of the ones in the Old Testament are especially troubling--to me, at least. I'm not sure who wrote them, if it was one person, a correlation committee, or-- Maybe somebody could tell me.

The one for section 105? Yes, that one has always bothered me also. A little bit of PR spin, it seems to me, softening one of the most troubling but instructive episodes in our history.

Link to comment

I am not a big fan of any of the chapter prefaces in the Standard Works. Some of the ones in the Old Testament are especially troubling--to me, at least. I'm not sure who wrote them, if it was one person, a correlation committee, or-- Maybe somebody could tell me.

Bruce R. McConkie, who was viewed by the brethren at the time as the resident scriptorian and doctrinal expert.

Link to comment

Joseph Smith was an idealist--to me, this was one of his outstanding characteristics. He never asked if this or that were possible, he just did it--let the chips fall where they may. And it is this that characterizes the entire Zions Camp episode--irrepressible faith and idealism in something that ultimately was just not possible.

Ideals are seldom if ever realized in this life--not even the ideals of Joseph Smith. And that's OK; this is partly what it means to be human--our natures are "fallen", our feet are made of clay and are firmly rooted in the earth, not the heavens.

What does this have to do with the heading to sec. 105? It--the heading--comes across as sounding (to me, and maybe to me only) as if the church is embarrassed by the failure of Zions Camp, and so they feel compelled to assign what had been at best an incidental purpose of the camp--to bring provisions to saints who had remained in Zion--it comes across as if they are assigning this as THE purpose of the camp. I personally think it would be better to acknowledge the primary purpose of the camp, the ideals and faith that drove it and the disappointment and disillusion that followed when it ultimately failed.

Link to comment

What does this have to do with the heading to sec. 105? It--the heading--comes across as sounding (to me, and maybe to me only) as if the church is embarrassed by the failure of Zions Camp, and so they feel compelled to assign what had been at best an incidental purpose of the camp--to bring provisions to saints who had remained in Zion--

The section from the history of the church does state a little more. But it also claims that provisions were being brought to the saints because of the persecution that they experienced. And this is what is included in the introduction. It certainly is not a lie nor is it misleading. It does show that the early saints were being terribly persecuted by the mobs and that they needed supplies. And supplies were brought to them. I see no problem.

Link to comment

It doesn't say that "clothing and provisions" was their "mission", it simply states that as a part of their mission they also brought clothing and provisions.

Honestly, that's kinda how I read it too. But since it doesn't mention what their mission actually was, it leaves a gap that should be filled.

Unfortunately, the simple facts don't lend themselves to an easily faith-promoting interpretation of the success of Zion's camp (at least one that could be summarized in a chapter heading). So I'd be curious to see how Consig or anyone else would improve on the heading in a way that doesn't raise more questions than it answers.

Link to comment

So I'd be curious to see how Consig or anyone else would improve on the heading in a way that doesn't raise more questions than it answers.

In this case, I would probably choose to remain silent and not try to misrepresent the purpose of Zion's Camp as a relief effort.

All the Best!

--Consiglieri

Link to comment

I guess I'm having a hard time understanding the issue. Zion's camp was originally organized to bring clothing and provisions to the saints who had been driven out, with the promise of the governor that he would help them get their lands back if they would provide an army to defend the saints. That was the reason Zion's Camp was organized. The fact that the purpose changed doesn't alter the original intent at least on the part of those who joined.

The governor went back on his promise and it wasn't until camp arrived, after much trial, that the Lord gave the revelation that they were not to fight. Can you imagine the response if Joseph had put out a call to join the march so that you can be tried and tested and with no purpose other than that? Likely no one would have volunteered. As it was those who participated learned great lessons in faith, humility, obedience and the importance of unity.

Link to comment

I guess I'm having a hard time understanding the issue. Zion's camp was originally organized to bring clothing and provisions to the saints who had been driven out, with the promise of the governor that he would help them get their lands back if they would provide an army to defend the saints. That was the reason Zion's Camp was organized. The fact that the purpose changed doesn't alter the original intent at least on the part of those who joined.

I think that you bring up a good point. I just don't see all the fuss about this. I think that consig is attempting to find a negative to post and discuss. The quotation from Mark does prove that bringing provisions was a top priority.

Link to comment

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...