I was reading some documents of the history of the church after the dormition of Joseph Smith and all the new players it brought to the lidership scene.
After Joseph’s death everywhere appeared new successors with dreams and revelations, speakings of angels and prophecies, anointing and callings made in secrecy, well known leaders and new members as well claiming be the owner of the judge throne once belonging to THE SEER, and because of that, new seers appears with new stones, new tongues were spoken, new apocalyptic revelations, new plates translated, dissension, schism, angry, conspiracy.
The key question is: Did someone lie?
“Of course!” could be the easy answer, but why member of the church, specially members of the Quorum of the Twelve?, why the anointed ones of the Lord lied? Why someone that receive the Temple’s Endowment, the Anointing and Second Anointing have a need to lie? Of course there where some that were “just” members of the church, but why? Did ALL OF THEM saw a great opportunity to win the presidential chair?
Maybe was because all of them were greedy, or maybe for some reason God made them believe ALL of them should be the next prophet, or my favorite: PEOPLE WILL JUST BELIEVE those statements!
Of course the winner was brother Brigham who never intended to. But if his face and voice were “transfigurated” as a sign of God approval, doesn’t that immediately granted a bad reputation to all the others “candidates”? Evidently no, because the groups still followed their candidates, the schism already was created and was going deeper.
The whole period remind me of the play (and well known movie) of Arthur Miller: The Crucible, where a bunch of girls monopolized the town of Salem with pretended visions, dreams and revelations in order to fill their expectations and the villagers just believe in such “godly signs”. At the end was known for the head that all those revelations were false but after all the revolving it produced can’t change a thing, the lives of those killed can’t come back, the families and the sorrow was everywhere, god was not a friend anymore, people already stop believe in God’s revelations, and in innocence. The childish disposition and the naiveness were betrayed.
Just lets hope it wasn’t the case of the early church for the honor and sake of the Saints worldwide nowadays.
It is just a dark episode in the history of the church (of may) that make us turn the head and look forward and pretend it never happened.