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Random Polygamy Question


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3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

Not sure which one, but when one of his wives was a young girl Joseph told her he'd marry her one day, unless I'm getting the story wrong, my mind forgets, so hopefully someone will either correct or verify. To me that is sort of a grooming thing, which doesn't sit well. Here is an infographic of his wives but can't figure out which one it was. Didn't know of Joseph having other wives in my mid 40's and finding out started my faith crisis about 15 years ago, but still holding on to this faith for other reasons.  

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-WjLtGm8cVMs/Uiik1dLcrTI/AAAAAAAAAio/-mllOQ4KoXE/s1600/The+Many+Wives+Of+Joseph+Smith+Chart+v2.0.png

I believe you are talking about Mary Elizabeth Rollins.  https://josephsmithspolygamy.org/plural-wives-overview/mary-elizabeth-rollins/ has a bunch of sources of her relationship with Joseph Smith.  The statement that fits what you said is:

Quote

In 1834, [Joseph] was commanded to take me for a wife. I was a thousand miles from him. He got afraid. The angel came to him three times, the last time with a drawn sword and threatened his life. I did not believe. If God told him so, why did he not come and tell me? The angel told him I should have a witness. An angel came to me – it went through me like lightning – I was afraid. Joseph Said he came with more revelation and knowledge than Joseph ever dare reveal. (Brigham Young sealed me to him, for time and all eternity – Feb. 1842.) Joseph said I was his before I came here and he said all the Devils in Hell should never get me from him.

In 1834, she would be 16.  She would also not have been near Joseph Smith as she moved to Independence in 1831 and then Far West.  She also married Adam Lightner 1835.

She also said:

Quote

As for Sister Whitney, Bishop Whitney's wife, I shall never forget her. It was at their house that the Prophet Joseph first told me about his great vision concerning me. He said I was the first woman God commanded him to take as a plural wife. That was in 1831. He was very much frightened, the angel appeared to him three times. It was in the early part of Feb. 1842 that he was compelled to reveal it to me personally, by the Angel threatening him. I said I would not accept it until I had seen an immortal being myself. I could tell you about this, but cannot write any more in regard to this subject.

So, per her words, it is highly unlikely that he proposed to her in 1834.  It sounds more like he was commanded to commence polygamy and that he was shown that she was to be one of his wives.  But it wasn't until 1842 when he finally acted on that revelation and actually talked to her about it.  It doesn't sound like any form of grooming.

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3 hours ago, katherine the great said:

Are we free to discard the 10 Commandments too? Maybe some parts of the Mosaic law are worth preserving. Especially one like this that seems to defy the laws of nature. 

The Law of Moses applies only to Jews. Arguably, the Ten Commandments also seem to apply only to Jews, too. Who received the 10 Commandments and for whom did he receive them?  Moses for the children of Israel. Nobody else knew about them. The rest of the human race were ignorant of them. And believe it or not, one significant rabbinical authority (Maimonides) wrote that non-Jews aren't allowed to keep the Law of Moses, including resting on the Sabbath, and should even be forbidden to study the Torah (first five books of the OT)! 

However, through an apparent loophole, parts of the Ten Commandments do apply to non-Jews in the form of the Seven Laws of Noah (also called the Noahide Law). According to Jewish theology, observant Jews are worthy of heaven; but so also are non-Jews if they observed the Noahide Law. According to the Talmud, the Noahide Law was given by God as a binding set of universal moral laws for the "sons of Noah" – that is, all of Humanity.

Those laws are:

  1. Not to worship idols.
  2. Not to curse God.
  3. Not to commit murder.
  4. Not to commit adultery or sexual immorality.
  5. Not to steal.
  6. Not to eat flesh torn from a living animal.
  7. To establish courts of justice.

Pertaining to #4, does this include the same strictures as in the Law of Moses? How could it? It would requiring keeping the Law of Moses, which according to Maimonides is forbidden to non-Jews.

Maimonides gets specific about #4 with respect to non-Jews, and says that a non-Jewish man may not have sex with:

1) his mother, 2) his father’s wife, 3) a married woman, 4) his maternal sister, 5) a male, and 6) an animal.

This allows him to marry a woman and the woman's daughter. It also appears to allow him to marry his paternal sister. Both of these are in violation of the Law of Moses, but not the Law of Noah.

I'm not advocating anything, by the way, just thought it might be interesting to bring this up.

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3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

I won't even go where they are saying the women were getting abortions by Dr. Bennett, because that's not been proven I gather. But I will say that Joseph wasn't fully out as a polygamist and even denied it while living it and of course he'd not want offspring yet, and there is the natural method of the pull out method, sorry for the mention, didn't want to. But there's that and many miss it.

Focusing just on Joseph trying to prevent offspring misses the fact that there were other polygamists who were in the same situation as Joseph (denying it while living it) and who did have children.  The first polygamous marriage of Joseph's in Nauvoo was in 1841.  The first man other than Joseph who entered polygamy was Theodore Turley and that was in the beginning of 1842.  Brigham Young was a few months later.  By the middle of 1843, ~10 men other than Joseph had entered polygamy.  (See page 14 on https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V34N0102_135.pdf).  Several of these marriages did result in children while Joseph was alive.  So, it doesn't make much sense for Joseph trying to hide it while other men in the same situation weren't trying to hide it.

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1 hour ago, webbles said:

Focusing just on Joseph trying to prevent offspring misses the fact that there were other polygamists who were in the same situation as Joseph (denying it while living it) and who did have children.  The first polygamous marriage of Joseph's in Nauvoo was in 1841.  The first man other than Joseph who entered polygamy was Theodore Turley and that was in the beginning of 1842.  Brigham Young was a few months later.  By the middle of 1843, ~10 men other than Joseph had entered polygamy.  (See page 14 on https://www.dialoguejournal.com/wp-content/uploads/sbi/articles/Dialogue_V34N0102_135.pdf).  Several of these marriages did result in children while Joseph was alive.  So, it doesn't make much sense for Joseph trying to hide it while other men in the same situation weren't trying to hide it.

Webbles, you always find the facts and keep me straight, thank you. And thanks for being so civil to me, where I'm sure many lose patience. 

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2 hours ago, katherine the great said:

I have to wonder if #4 was written in  light of Abram’s marriage to Sarai. 

If one takes the origin of the Noahide Law as having been given through Noah (which is canon), it couldn't have been written in light of Abram's marriage to Sarai because that came later.

But besides that, Abram and Sarai were cousins, not half-siblings.

He said "sister" because the culture and the language didn't distinguish between sibling and cousin. At least that's what I heard.

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7 hours ago, webbles said:

The first man other than Joseph who entered polygamy was Theodore Turley and that was in the beginning of 1842.  

Turley was first convicted by a church council of adultery/ fornication with two women. Then was brought into the council of fifty. Possibly the light sentence was because he knew of JS  polygamy.  Later Turley married three sisters one of who left her living husband in England and married Turley here in the us. (Speculating here but I wonder if he met her on his mission). 
 

imagine getting zinged in a church court these days as a married man for two counts of adultery and they promote you lol?! Talk about corruption. Just makes me glad we do not live in a theocracy esp a Mormon one. I’m sure the connected get a break theses days as well so long as the public doesn’t know about it. 

Edited by secondclasscitizen
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8 hours ago, webbles said:

I believe you are talking about Mary Elizabeth Rollins.  https://josephsmithspolygamy.org/plural-wives-overview/mary-elizabeth-rollins/ has a bunch of sources of her relationship with Joseph Smith.  The statement that fits what you said is:

In 1834, she would be 16.  She would also not have been near Joseph Smith as she moved to Independence in 1831 and then Far West.  She also married Adam Lightner 1835.

She also said:

So, per her words, it is highly unlikely that he proposed to her in 1834.  It sounds more like he was commanded to commence polygamy and that he was shown that she was to be one of his wives.  But it wasn't until 1842 when he finally acted on that revelation and actually talked to her about it.  It doesn't sound like any form of grooming.

She wound up turning Joseph down, didn’t she?

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23 minutes ago, secondclasscitizen said:

Turley was first convicted by a church council of adultery/ fornication with two women. Then was brought into the council of fifty. Possibly the light sentence was because he knew of JS  polygamy.  Later Turley married three sisters one of who left her living husband in England and married Turley here in the us. (Speculating here but I wonder if he met her on his mission). 
 

imagine getting zinged in a church court these days as a married man for two counts of adultery and they promote you lol?! Talk about corruption. Just makes me glad we do not live in a theocracy esp a Mormon one. I’m sure the connected get a break theses days as well so long as the public doesn’t know about it. 

He was accused in January 1841 shortly after he returned from his mission.  The likelihood that he knew about polygamy at that time would be extremely slim.  Joseph Smith didn't marry his first Nauvoo wife (and second polygamous marriage after Fanny Alger) until April 1841.  Even if Turley somehow knew about polygamy, he definitely would have been acting without permission from Joseph Smith.  The council also didn't disfellowship or excommunicate him.  They only requested that he confess both publicly and to the council.  So, it doesn't seem like Turley was able to keep it secret.

And it looks like that book that I linked to is wrong on his date of his first polygamous marriage.  It was most likely 1844.  It was to Mary Ann who actually had already had a child out of wedlock back in 1842.  She had been seduced by Gustavus Hills who was most likely a follower of John Bennet.

Turley joined the Council of Fifty after Joseph's death (1845) but did enter polygamy before his death (1844).  But I don't see that as corruption.  Joseph was a really forgiving person.  For example, W.W. Phelps testified against him in Missouri which led to Joseph's incarceration in Liberty jail.  Phelps was then excommunicated in 1839.  But by 1841 he was rebaptized, 1843 he was endowed, 1844 he received his second annointing in 1844, and also joined the Council of Fifty and the Nauvoo City Council.

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2 hours ago, JustAnAustralian said:

A break from what? Church discipline? Elder Hamula got excommunicated out of the blue only a few years ago so clearly being a GA isn't enough.

Apparently monson isn’t as forgiving as smith… like it is their job to forgive for anything. That’s what Jesus is for. 

Edited by secondclasscitizen
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2 hours ago, JustAnAustralian said:

A break from what? Church discipline? Elder Hamula got excommunicated out of the blue only a few years ago so clearly being a GA isn't enough.

Dunn caught a free pass. Lied to the entire world under the color of the priesthood and walked with a pension and emeritus status. I have more respect to an adulterer. At least they generally only lie to one person instead of an entire church and prospective converts. Should have been exed. 

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3 hours ago, webbles said:

He was accused in January 1841 shortly after he returned from his mission.  The likelihood that he knew about polygamy at that time would be extremely slim.  Joseph Smith didn't marry his first Nauvoo wife (and second polygamous marriage after Fanny Alger) until April 1841.  Even if Turley somehow knew about polygamy, he definitely would have been acting without permission from Joseph Smith.  The council also didn't disfellowship or excommunicate him.  They only requested that he confess both publicly and to the council.  So, it doesn't seem like Turley was able to keep it secret.

And it looks like that book that I linked to is wrong on his date of his first polygamous marriage.  It was most likely 1844.  It was to Mary Ann who actually had already had a child out of wedlock back in 1842.  She had been seduced by Gustavus Hills who was most likely a follower of John Bennet.

Turley joined the Council of Fifty after Joseph's death (1845) but did enter polygamy before his death (1844).  But I don't see that as corruption.  Joseph was a really forgiving person.  For example, W.W. Phelps testified against him in Missouri which led to Joseph's incarceration in Liberty jail.  Phelps was then excommunicated in 1839.  But by 1841 he was rebaptized, 1843 he was endowed, 1844 he received his second annointing in 1844, and also joined the Council of Fifty and the Nauvoo City Council.

I think Turley knew about it. He was one of smiths body guards and next door neighbor. Smith even let Turley open a brewery or some such thing… wow not withstanding lol. 

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1 hour ago, JustAnAustralian said:

The word of wisdom wasn't initially a required living standard. Hence why it says "not by commandment" at the start.

It still isn’t a commandment now. Says exact same thing. I guess none of our past prophets felt it important enough to change d&c to reflect the alleged change. I’m thinking it was never intended to be any more than smith treated it. After all he is the one who received the revelation he ought to know. 

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6 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I think Turley knew about it. He was one of smiths body guards and next door neighbor. Smith even let Turley open a brewery or some such thing… wow not withstanding lol. 

You've got the timeline backwards.  He obviously knew about it by 1844 when he took his first polygamous wife.  The discussion is if he knew about it in January 1841 when he was tried and convicted by the church court.  The accusation was about his behavior during the trip from England to Nauvoo.  So he would had to have been taught by Joseph Smith about polygamy before he left on his mission which was in 1839.  At that time, he wasn't a next door neighbor or a body guard.  I highly doubt that he knew about it before his mission or that he even knew about it by January 1841.

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20 hours ago, webbles said:

I believe you are talking about Mary Elizabeth Rollins.  https://josephsmithspolygamy.org/plural-wives-overview/mary-elizabeth-rollins/ has a bunch of sources of her relationship with Joseph Smith.  The statement that fits what you said is:

In 1834, she would be 16.  She would also not have been near Joseph Smith as she moved to Independence in 1831 and then Far West.  She also married Adam Lightner 1835.

She also said:

So, per her words, it is highly unlikely that he proposed to her in 1834.  It sounds more like he was commanded to commence polygamy and that he was shown that she was to be one of his wives.  But it wasn't until 1842 when he finally acted on that revelation and actually talked to her about it.  It doesn't sound like any form of grooming.

This is the quote I was thinking about, Mary Elizabeth Rollins was a young 12 year old. That's why I thought it was grooming. 

"Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner: "[At age 12 in 1831], [Smith] told me about his great vision concerning me. He said I was the first woman God commanded him to take as a plural wife. … In 1834 he was commanded to take me for a Wife …. [In 1842 I] went forward and was sealed to him. Brigham Young performed the sealing … for time, and all Eternity. I did just as Joseph told me to do." (Compton, Todd (1997), In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith)"
 

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6 hours ago, Tacenda said:

This is the quote I was thinking about, Mary Elizabeth Rollins was a young 12 year old. That's why I thought it was grooming. 

"Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner: "[At age 12 in 1831], [Smith] told me about his great vision concerning me. He said I was the first woman God commanded him to take as a plural wife. … In 1834 he was commanded to take me for a Wife …. [In 1842 I] went forward and was sealed to him. Brigham Young performed the sealing … for time, and all Eternity. I did just as Joseph told me to do." (Compton, Todd (1997), In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith)"
 

If this quote is from the Wives of Joseph Smith site, you need to be careful with ellipses as in the past, they have combined comments given at different times into one quote as if said at the same time, resulting in a mis representation of what was actually meant.  I haven’t checked this one, if it is lifted straight from Compton, not as much as an issue I would guess, but I don’t have that book to check.

added: the above quote is a compilation of at least two different sources, the first is a letter to Emmeline Wells and the second is Mary’s address give at BYU, both in 1905.

http://archives.lib.byu.edu/repositories/14/archival_objects/168183

http://user.xmission.com/~plporter/lds/merlbyu.htm

Now I want to know if they inappropriately combined stuff they lifted from Compton or if it was Compton who did it.  Anyone have his book to check?  That they did not give the page numbers makes me think it was them.  Added:  looked like Compton appropriately separated them, but the ellipses vanish all the context he added showing these were multiple conversations Mary had over some years.

The last part may be from another letter, dated 1870 or 1880, see footnote 8

https://josephsmithspolygamy.org/plural-wives-overview/mary-elizabeth-rollins/#link_ajs-fn-id_8-5682

Edited by Calm
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7 hours ago, secondclasscitizen said:

I guess none of our past prophets felt it important enough to change d&c to reflect the alleged change.

Why would they change the D&C? The word of wisdom is still a thing. Just because adherence to it is now a requirement for certain things doesn't change what it is. Even JS wanted it more forcefully implemented ( https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/minute-book-1/43  )though it still wasn't as forcefully implemented in all cases.

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7 hours ago, Tacenda said:

This is the quote I was thinking about, Mary Elizabeth Rollins was a young 12 year old. That's why I thought it was grooming. 

"Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner: "[At age 12 in 1831], [Smith] told me about his great vision concerning me. He said I was the first woman God commanded him to take as a plural wife. … In 1834 he was commanded to take me for a Wife …. [In 1842 I] went forward and was sealed to him. Brigham Young performed the sealing … for time, and all Eternity. I did just as Joseph told me to do." (Compton, Todd (1997), In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith)"
 

In addition to what Calm said, here's a larger quote from the letter that contains that first part (copied and pasted from the transcript on the site Calm linked to):

Quote

as for Sister Whitney Bishop Whitneys wife I shall never forget her, as it was at her House that the Prophet Joseph first told me about his great vision concerning me. he said I was the first woman God commanded him to take as a plural wife, <in 183[-]> he was very much frightened about until the Angel appeard to him three times. it was in the early part of Feb, 1842 before <that> he was compelled to reveal it to me personally, by the Angel threatening him

To me, that letter makes it sound like it was revealed to Joseph in 1831 (or maybe another year since the 1 in the letter has odd marks through it) that she would be his wife.  He was scared about that idea and it wasn't until 1842 when he actually approached her for the first time.  I believe the mention of Sister Whitney's house is her Nauvoo house.  The Whitney's were polygamy insiders around then (their daughter would be sealed to Joseph Smith later that year), so it would make sense for Joseph to "first [tell] [her] about his great version concerning [her]" at their house where it was a safe place to discuss it.

Here's another quote from her that also places her far away when Joseph learned in 1831 that she should be his wife (http://www.boap.org/LDS/Early-Saints/MLightner.html):

Quote

He preached polygamy and he not only preached it, but he practiced it. I am a living witness to it. It was given to him before he gave it to the Church. An angel came to him and the last time he came with a drawn sword in his hand and told Joseph if he did not go into that principle, he would slay him. Joseph said he talked to him soberly about it, and told him it was an abomination and quoted scripture to him. He said in the Book of Mormon it was an abomination in the eyes of the Lord, and they were to adhere to these things except the Lord speak. I am the first being that the revelation [D&C 132] was given to him for and I was one thousand miles away in Missouri, for we went up to Jackson County in 1841 [1831].

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