Mormonism, America, and the White Horse Prophecy
will the white horse ride?… pt.2
Brigham Young also repeated what Joseph Smith stated before him. “Will the Constitution be destroyed? No; it will be held inviolate by this people; and, as Joseph Smith said, "The time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread. At this critical juncture, this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction." (Discourses of Brigham Young, pp. 360-361 and p. 469)
“Brethren and sisters, our friends wish to know our feelings towards the Government I answer, they are first-rate, and we will prove it too, as you will see if you only live long enough, for that we shall live to prove it is certain; and when the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for the "Mormon" Elders to save it from utter destruction; and they will step forth and do it.”
(Journal of Discourses, Vol. 2, p. 182, Brigham Young, February 18, 1855)
In the book Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson: “The Lord told the Prophet Joseph Smith there would be an attempt to overthrow the country by destroying the Constitution. Joseph Smith predicted that the time would come when the Constitution would hang, as it were, by a thread, and at that time "this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction" (Journal of Discourses, 7:15).
“It is my conviction that the elders of Israel, widely spread over the nation, will at that crucial time successfully rally the righteous of our country and provide the necessary balance of strength to save the institutions of constitutional government.” (Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson p. 618-619)
Long after Smiths prophecy the Mormon church continued to speak on his sermon. “The Prophet Joseph told us that he saw the day when even the Constitution of the United States would be torn and hang as by a thread. But, thank the Lord, the thread did not break. He saw the day when this people would be a balance of power to come to its defense. The Book of Mormon prophecies concerning the future of America have been referred to in our hearing during this conference, wherein it is stated that this nation, though it becomes a mighty nation, still it can stand in security here only as it serves the God of this land. That conception was in the hearts of the men who founded America” (Melvin J. Ballard, Conference Report, October 1928 p.108)
Ballard went on to say in the “Conference Report”, April 1933, p. 127
“I believe that it is the destiny of the Latter-day Saints to support the Constitution of the United States. The Prophet Joseph Smith is alleged to have said-and I believe he did say it-that the day would come when the Constitution would hang as by a thread. But he saw that the thread did not break, thank the Lord, and that the Latter-day Saints would become a balance of power, with others, to preserve that Constitution. If there is-and there is one part of the Constitution hanging as by a thread today-where do the Latter-day Saints belong? Their place is to rally to the support of that Constitution, and maintain it and defend it and support it by their lives and by their vote. Let us not disappoint God nor his prophet.”
Harold B. Lee, “But beyond all that, the Latter-day Saints have a responsibility, that may be better understood when we recall the prophecy of Joseph Smith” referring to (J. of D., Vol. 7:15) “I want to ask you to consider the meaning of that prophecy, in the light of the declaration of the prophets of the Book of Mormon times, who declared that this land was a choice land above all other lands, and would be free from bondage and from captivity, and from all other nations under heaven, if they will but serve the God of this land” even our Savior, Jesus Christ. (Ether 2:12) Conference Report, April 1942, p. 87).
Before I move on to more quotes endorsing Smiths white horse prophecy. We need to clarify what is written on the first page of The Book of Mormon “The Book of Mormon is a volume of holy scripture comparable to the Bible. It is a record of God's dealings with the ancient inhabitants of the Americas…”
2 Nephi 10:1-11 “America shall be a land of liberty where no king shall rule-Be reconciled to God and gain salvation through his grace.”
This all points to the restored gospel of Joseph Smith. The Bible has no mention of America, nor Jews or Jesus in America. Yet their second President, Brigham Young said, "In the beginning, after the earth was prepared for man, the Lord commenced his work upon what is now called this American continent, where the Garden of Eden was made. In the days of Noah, in the days of the floating of the ark, he took the people to another part of the earth: the earth was divided, and there he set up his kingdom" (October 7, 1860, Journal of Discourses 8:195).
Mormon leaders state that Eden was located in the United States, they have also stated that Noah built his ark nearby. So they see their religion intrinsically connected to this land and its governmental system.
“The remnant of Jacob shall come to .the knowledge of the Lord their God and shall inherit the Americas(3 Nephi 20:1). Chapter 13 “Ether speaks of a New Jerusalem to be built in America by the seed of Joseph (Book of Mormon)
Jesus went to America to deliver the Gospel to the descendents of Israel, the Nepites. There has not been any archaeological evidence that there were Nephites in ancient America, but there is overwhelming evidence of the Israelites in the Holy Land. The Book of Mormon claims the Nephites were taught a different gospel, the restored gospel of Joseph Smith (of works salvation). The Christian church is flourishing in America in 147 B.C. Disciples were instructed in the sacraments of communion and practiced Christian baptism, all before Jesus was born. Which makes it logically impossible.
Mark E. Petersen asks, “How long will it be before the words of the prophet Joseph will be fulfilled? He said if the Constitution of the United States were saved at all it must be done by this people. It will not be many years before these words come to pass. When the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for the "Mormon Elders to save it from utter destruction; and they will step forth and do it. . . . if it is sustained on this land of Joseph, it will be done by us and our posterity” (Conference Report, April 1946, p. 171)
Ezra Taft Benson, “It is no wonder that the Prophet Joseph said-even though he knew he would suffer martyrdom in this land-"The Constitution of the United States is a glorious standard; it is founded in the wisdom of God. It is a heavenly banner."… Thank God he did not see the thread break. He also indicated the important part that this people should yet play in standing for the principles embodied in these sacred documents-the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution” (Conference Report, April 1948, p. 85)
Clifford E. Young, “It is said that President Brigham Young, many years ago, made this statement: When the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for Mormon elders to save it from utter destruction: and they will step forth and do it” (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 2:182, Feb. 18, 1855.) Conference Report, April 1949, p. 75-76
Orson Hyde remembers:
“I believe he said something like this - that the time would come when the Constitution and the country would be in danger of an overthrow; and said he: "If the Constitution be saved at all, it will be by the Elders of this Church." I believe this is about the language, as nearly as I can recollect it. (Journal of Discourses, 6:152.)
Many have said Orson Hyde has given the correct interpretation, including Joseph Fielding Smith Jr., (Doctrines of Salvation, Vol. 3, p. 326)
The consistent theme is that it is the Mormon church, its leadership that will be saving the constitution, the country in a time of great turmoil. Harold B. Lee, gave his explanation of Smith and Young’s prophecy and desire. “It was Joseph Smith who has been quoted as having said that the time would come when the Constitution would hang as by a thread and at that time when it was thus in jeopardy, the elders of this Church would step forth and save it from destruction. Why the elders of this Church? Would it be sacrilegious to paraphrase the words of the Apostle Peter, and say that the Constitution of the United States could be saved by the elders of this Church because this Church and this Church alone has the words of eternal life? We alone know by revelation as to how the Constitution came into being, and we, alone, know by revelation the destiny of this nation” (Conference Report, October 1952, p. 18)
Senator Wallace F. Bennett, summarized this viewpoint as an abuse of power “We have much in our national system that militates against the rise of a dictator. The Bill of Rights with its philosophy of individual rights against oppression is still a curb on a power-hungry President. But if I were to guess as to how the Constitution may "hang by a thread" it would be because of the immense powers given to the President and his opportunity for their abuse… This is our duty as citizens of the United States, and pre-eminently our duty as Latter-day Saints, because without the Constitution this glorious restoration would not have taken place in this land and might not have taken place at this point in history” (BYU Speeches, February 15, 1961, p. 13). In other words Mormonism was born in America for a reason.
Judge Joseph E. Nelson:
“ It is encumbent on the American people to steadfastly maintain the historic balance of power by the three branches of government if our political system is to be preserved. If this is not done then the thread by which it has been predicted the Constitution will hang will be clipped and our form of government will disappear. We, the American people, must not become so internationally minded as to sell our birthright for a spurious promise of world peace. The most nationally-minded people are our enemies. We must remain faithful to our pledge, regardless of charges of chauvinism, to preserve America "with our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor." (BYU Speeches, April 24, 1963, p. 3)
Dr. Ernest L. Wilkinson,
“…the prophetic utterance made by the Prophet Joseph that the Constitution of the United States would hang by a single thread, but be saved by the elders of Israel. I hope you will read those sources so you will be well-informed as to this prophecy and be prepared to do your part in its fulfillment”( BYU Speeches, April 21, 1966, p. 7)
They saw America as the New Israel and they the elders that would save the country when the time of the prophecy surfaced.
The National Center for Constitutional Studies or NCCS at nccs.net, formerly Freemans institute (he changed its name in 1984) was founded on July 4, 1971 by Dr. W. Cleon Skousen (who died in 2006). What you will find is many of the same books and the ideas promoted by Mormon Glenn Beck (formerly on Fox news channel). One can certainly say out of the past comes the present with Beck’s crusade to save America. Mormon’s believe America and its Constitution were established by the hand of God, as Ezra Taft Benson called them sacred documents.
While the majority of us do not see America as an equivalent to Israel or a new Israel, we do agree on this country founded on the principles of God in the Bible and is to maintain a balance of powers between the federal government and states, that we are to uphold the constitution of the land.
The NCCS mission is to educate of citizens about the Constitution, yet they certainly express the sentiments of the LDS prophecy on saving the United States and the Constitution. On its website:
Question: In the view of NCCS, is it still possible to save the Constitution?
Answer: “We firmly believe it's possible to save the Constitution, but we believe it can be saved only by an enlightened citizenry who have the knowledge and commitment to abide by its precepts and safeguard its original purity. This is why the American people must have an opportunity to learn the truths on which our nation was founded. Never has there been a more urgent need for this kind of education-and that's precisely why NCCS was created.” (http://nccs.net/faq.html)
A preservation of the constitution has also surfaced in a recent movement (outside the Mormons), as secular constitutionalists, patriots and Christians in America all want the same thing.
“If the Gentiles on this land reject the word of God and conspire to overthrow liberty and the Constitution, their doom is fixed, and they "shall be cut off from among my people who are of the covenant" (1 Nephi 14:6; 3 Nephi 21:11, 14, 21; D&C 84:114-15, 117). (God, Family, Country, p. 345.)
Notice this is a package that is concentrating on Mormonism.
Mormon Apostle Orson Pratt wrote a series of questions and answers in which he said, "Question: What will be the consequences if they (the United States) do not embrace the Book of Mormon as a divine revelation?”
Answer: They will be destroyed from the land and sent down to hell, like all other generations who have rejected a divine message" (The Seer, p. 215).
It’s been 180 years and the United States has not embraced the Book of Mormon in the way he stated, even with his veiled statement of eternal judgment.
The Mormons believe that they were to set up the new Zion here in America. Joseph Smith talking to Elder John J. Roberts, of Paradise, Utah, speaking of the future:
"You will see the Constitution of the United States almost destroyed. It will hang like a thread as fine as a silk fiber." At that time the Prophet's countenance became sad, because as he said, "I love the Constitution; it was made by the inspiration of God; and it will be preserved and saved by the efforts of the White Horse, and by the Red Horse who will combine in its defense …. "During this time the Great White Horse will have gathered strength, sending out elders to gather the honest in heart from among the Pale Horse, or people of the United States, to stand by the Constitution of the United States as it was given by the inspiration of God. In these days which are yet to come God will set up a Kingdom never to be thrown down, but other Kingdoms to come into it, and those Kingdoms that will not let the Gospel be preached in their lands will be humbled until they will."
As if this banter was not enough (referring to the Tribulation and the horsemen) we have America called Zion and Smith believed their church had the 10 tribes of Israel whom would build a Temple in Zion and save America. "The temple in Jackson county, Missouri, will be built in that generation. The saints will think that there will not be time to build it, but with all the help you can receive, you can put up a great temple quickly. … all the skilled mechanics you want and the Ten Tribes of Israel will help build it. When you see this land bound with iron, you may look forward to Jackson county.",,, The last great struggle that Zion will ever have to contend with will be when the whole of America will be made the Zion of God. Those opposing will be called Gog and Magog. The nations of the earth will be led by the Russian Czar and his power will be great, but all opposition will be overcome and this land will be the Zion of our God. Amen."
The original American/ Mormonism has a patriotic dominionism contained in its theology. A Mormon theocracy is its basis for America’s true potential, the goal of the constitution.
Why did I include so many quotes on this prophecy from the founder of the largest American-born religion? To make a point that the leadership are aware of it this, they refer to it. And it has continued throughout their churches history to our day.
Joseph Smith's hopeful prophecy that one day a Mormon, the church would come to America's rescue when the constitution "is on the brink of ruin" is something unspoken to the public.
Glenn Beck, is said to have converted to Mormonism in 1999 , on his radio show Beck was interviewing Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, also a Mormon, when he said: "I heard Barack Obama talk about the Constitution and I thought, we are at the point or we are very near the point where our Constitution is hanging by a thread."
"Well, let me tell you something," Hatch responded. "I believe the Constitution is hanging by a thread."
Beck told Bill O'Reilly (November 14, 2008), just after President Obama's election. "I feel the Constitution is hanging in the balance right now, hanging by a thread unless the good Americans wake up." (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/danamilbank/post_996_b_749750. html)
Certainly using the same language shows he is aware of his religions founder’s words.
“Anyone can look at the words of the Prophet Joseph Smith... Brigham Young and others.... I have always felt that they meant that sometime the question of whether we are going to proceed on the basis of the Constitution would arise and at this point government leaders who were Mormons would be involved in answering that question.” (George Romney, interview in “A Man’s Religion and American Politics: An Interview with Governor Romney,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1967, v. 2, p. 25)
What about today?
Mitt Romney is a direct descendant of Miles Park Romney, one of the original pilgrims in the Mormon church who fled west to Utah with Brigham Young. Mitt Romney's father, George, was born in a polygamous Mormon community in Mexico. Mitt joined the Mormon priesthood at 12, and became a church elder at 18. Romney served for two and a half years as a Mormon missionary in France (1966-68), during the last three months of which he functioned as mission president in Paris. (Mission president and Stake high councilors are required to be a high priest). Romney has acknowledged that his faith “became much deeper” as a result of his missionary experience. During his mission Mitt he read Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich which had an influence on him (the most popular book on positive thinking relating to finances and success of business).
When he returned to the U.S., he attended Brigham Young University, the largest church sponsored university in the United States, who are almost 100% Mormon. He earned an undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University in 1971. He received both a law degree and an M.B.A. from Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School in 1975, graduating in the top 5% of his class. He was hired at Bain consulting in 1977 and became vice president in 1978.
Male church members beginning at age twelve are eligible for the Aaronic priesthood by the laying on of hands by men ordained to the priesthood. To be a Melchizedek priest in the church the person must hold the Aaronic priesthood and be at least 18 years old.
From 1984 to 1994 Romney served as ward bishop and then stake president in Boston. Romney is a “temple Mormon,” that is, a member of the LDS Church in good enough standing that he does participate in temple ceremonies. (Mitt Romney—More than Politics” (blog), 28 August 2008).
One of the Temple ceremonies is to baptize their members on behalf of deceased non-Mormon to provide them an opportunity to live in the highest heavenly kingdom.
In 1999, Romney became as president of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee and successfully rescued the 2002 WinterOlympics from financial dumpster and Salt Lake City held the Olympic Games in 2002. He was elected governor of Massachusetts in 2003 and made an unsuccessful run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008.
Romney is a smart and successful businessman and has quite a string of accomplishments, he fixed troubled companies. Today he is worth over 250 million dollars, as a faithful Mormon he has tithed millions of dollars to his Church. As a seasoned businessman Romney authored the book Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership, and the Olympic Games in 2004. Can Romney resolve the economic problem or exasperate it? Can he solve the failed relationships with countries, and all the other issues that we now face? Looking at Romney’s business track record and then as governor of Massachusetts, the GOP is between a rock and a hard place. The field of candidates is slim pickin's. Each has there own baggage, besides what they can bring that would be an asset.
While we may not have to be too concerned of him cheating or breaking a law, (Mormon’s are often known for being moral), there are other things to be concerned with. The religious question is certainly one of them.
In a 2005 interview for the Atlantic Monthly, Sridhar Pappu asked Romney, “How Mormon are you?”
Romney: “You know, the principles and values taught to me by faith are values I aspire to live by and are as American as motherhood and apple pie. My faith believes in family, believes in Jesus Christ. It believes in serving one’s neighbor and one’s community. It believes in military service. It believes in patriotism; it actually believes this nation had an inspired founding. It is in some respects a quintessentially American faith, and those values are values I aspire to live by. And I’m not perfect, but I’m one aspiring to be a good person as defined by the biblical Judeo-Christian standards that our society would recognize.” (Pappu, “The Holy Cow! Candidate”)
When a Mormon says his faith is important it carries a different concept, yet they have the same commitment any other religious person would have.
A few years later, Romney gave a speech that affirmed his Mormonism,Remembering Kennedy, “Like him, I am an American running for president. I do not define my candidacy by my religion. A person should not be elected because of his faith nor should he be rejected because of his faith.
"Let me assure you that no authorities of my church, or of any other church for that matter, will ever exert influence on presidential decisions. Their authority is theirs, within the province of church affairs, and it ends where the affairs of the nation begin. … My church's beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history. These are not bases for criticism but rather a test of our tolerance. Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree.”
Before one concludes Romney is not a dedicated Mormon, he then said: "There are some for whom these commitments are not enough. They would prefer it if I would simply distance myself from my religion, say that it is more a tradition than my personal conviction, or disavow one or another of its precepts. That I will not do. I believe in my Mormon faith and I endeavor to live by it. My faith is the faith of my fathers – I will be true to them and to my beliefs.”
He then went on to say, "There are some who would have a presidential candidate describe and explain his church's distinctive doctrines. To do so would enable the very religious test the founders prohibited in the Constitution. No candidate should become the spokesman for his faith. For if he becomes president he will need the prayers of the people of all faiths.
"I believe that every faith I have encountered draws its adherents closer to God. And in every faith I have come to know, there are features I wish were in my own: I love the profound ceremony of the Catholic Mass, the approachability of God in the prayers of the Evangelicals, the tenderness of spirit among the Pentecostals, the confident independence of the Lutherans, the ancient traditions of the Jews, unchanged through the ages, and the commitment to frequent prayer of the Muslims. As I travel across the country and see our towns and cities, I am always moved by the many houses of worship with their steeples, all pointing to heaven, reminding us of the source of life's blessings.” (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/06/us/politics/06text-romney.html )
At time he sounds ecumenical, universal, at other times thoroughly Mormon. Seems to be more open than an adherent. The fact is, not all our presidents who claimed to be Christian had correct doctrine; some were not Christian at all: Howard Taft was brought up in the Unitarian church; Thomas Jefferson was a deist not subscribing to any affiliation. Presidents have been Episcopalian, Methodist, Baptist, Quaker and one supposed Jehovah Witness. (http://www.adherents.com/adh_presidents.html). We have had a diversity of presidents, and should remember we are not electing a pastor or a Pope. Having stated this, one might ask an apparent question: why is the leader of the Mormon Church called “the President of the church;” who is known as a prophet, seer, a revelator. What church or religion has a president, a term and position that is reserved for CEO’s and governments of countries.
Many ask are we ready for a Mormon president? Let me further ask: are we ready for a Hindu, Bahai, or 7th Day Adventist president? How about a Muslim president? What of a genuine Christian president?
We cannot say for certain there is a straight line connection with Mitt Romney running for president for the second time and Joseph Smiths prophecy and American revelation. But with a Mormon president can we expect the church to make a large appeal on this in their proselytizing door to door campaign for their missionary efforts.
As we move toward a decision time, we, as Christians will need wisdom, true wisdom that can only come from God and the Bible.
See a trailer on the film documentary http://amormonpresident.com/
The Deseret news reacts to the movie http://www.deseretnews.com/article/695230114/A-Mormon-president-New-film-shows-links-between-Smith-Romney.html
For what its worth, PBS did a history on the church that has some accurate facts as well as inaccuracy. http://www.pbs.org/mormons/view/