Journal of Discourses 12:340-341 “After they had come down into this valley by the command of the Lord they collected seeds and grain of every kind, and animals of almost every description, among which, no doubt, were the elephant and the curelom and the cumom, very huge animals that existed in those days, and after traveling and crossing, we suppose, the sea that was east of where the Tower of Babel stood, and traveling through the wilderness many days, with their flocks and herds, their grain and substance, they eventually came to the great Pacific ocean, on the eastern borders of China or somewhere in that region.” – Orson Pratt, Salt Lake City, Sunday, Dec. 27, 1868.
1 Timothy 4:7 “But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness.”
Mr. Pratt’s story reminds me of my late father-in-law.
Larry was larger than life, and his personality seeped into everything he did. He had two granddaughters, and would set one on each knee while using his belly as a table to hold the storybooks he’d read to them.
He was especially fond of one book because of the reaction he’d get from them each time he read it; ‘The Monster at the End of This Book’. In grand fashion each page was turned with anticipatory excitement because the story was always embellished from the last time he read it to them. It was a favored time of the girls, not to mention Larry as well.
Mr. Pratt’s ability to add to the supposed events of the Jaredites knew no bounds. As he told a story of their adventures crossing the Pacific Ocean in BC 2200, for good measure, he felt compelled to throw the name of God into the mix as well.
Journal of Discourses 12:341 “But the most wonderful thing concerning the first colonization of this country after the flood was the way that they navigated the great Pacific ocean. Only think for a few moments of the Lord our God taking eight barges, launched on the eastern coast of China, and bringing them a voyage of three hundred and forty-four days and landing them all in the same neighborhood and vicinity and at the same time. This was a miracle. This was not done by the aid of steam, or by the navigator’s art, but it was by the power of the Almighty God. He it was who controlled these vessels; He it was who governed the winds of heaven; He it was who brought them up out of the midst of the deep, when they were swallowed up, and He it was who guided them safely to this American shore.” – Orson Pratt, Salt Lake City, Sunday, Dec. 27, 1868.
This must’ve been quite the feat for a god who didn’t have the ability to create the earth out of nothing. Where did he get the wherewithal, not to mention power, to perform such a miracle?
While Larry’s bedtime stories were purely a harmless make-believe experience, the scenario with Mr. Pratt was anything but. He was tugging at the heartstrings of a vulnerable people who looked to him for guidance in their quest for eternal salvation.
While it seems this event has no bearing on the Mormons of today, nothing could be further from the truth. They’re still buying into the make-believe stories in the Book of Mormon, and it can be seen each time they bear their testimonies proclaiming the BoM is the word of God.
Pray for those who believe the wives tales, and for Jesus to show them greater things that are actually true!
With Love in Christ;