Discourses of Brigham Young

The following quotes come from the book Discourse of Brigham Young, the second president of the church. This was an employee gift by the First Presidency in 1992. To visit the site with all of the books and quotes from these, go here.

“It is marvelous that the enemies of Brigham Young, with this
wealth of material before them, have found so little to use to his
disadvantage. But, a dishonest or insincere man would not have
had his public utterances reported and published all over the
world. The consistency of the views presented, from the first to the
last discourse, would be astounding, were it not for the fact that he
clung constantly for interpretation to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as
he had been taught it by the Prophet Joseph Smith. His devotion
to his teacher and predecessor, the Prophet is tenderly beautiful”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p.vi).

Apostasy, Great

“Whenever there is a disposition manifested in any of the members
of the Church to question the right of the President of the
whole Church to direct in all things, you see manifested evidences
of apostasy—of a spirit which, if encouraged, will lead to a separation
from the Church and to final destruction; wherever there is
a disposition to operate against any legally appointed officer of
this Kingdom, no matter in what capacity he is called to act, if
persisted in, it will be followed by the same results; they will ‘walk
after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 83.)

“When a man begins to find fault, inquiring in regard to this, that,
and the other, saying, ‘Does this or that look as though the Lord
dictated it?’ you may know that that person has more or less of
the spirit of apostasy” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young,
p. 83).

“The Lord did not come with the armies of heaven in power and
great glory, nor send his messengers panoplied with aught else
than the truth of heaven, to communicate to the meek, the lowly,
the youth of humble origin, the sincere enquirer after the knowledge
of God. But he did send his angel to this same obscure person,
Joseph Smith, Jr., who afterwards became a Prophet, Seer,
and Revelator, and informed him that he should not join any of
the religious sects of the day, for they were all wrong; that they
were following the precepts of men instead of the Lord Jesus; that
he had a work for him to perform, inasmuch as he should prove
faithful before him” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young,
p. 108).

Bible

“The doctrine that we preach is the doctrine of the Bible, it is the
doctrine the Lord has revealed for the salvation of the children of
God, and when men, who have once obeyed it, deny it, they deny
it with their eyes wide open, and knowing that they deny the truth
and set at naught the counsels of the Almighty” (Brigham Young,
Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 126).

Blacks

“Certainly there are few on the earth today who could claim a pure
lineage unspotted by interracial marriage. However, this does
change the fact that it is still against the commandments of God.
In regard to intermarriage with the Negro, all must be similarly
warned. God does not approve! Brigham Young admonished, ‘Be
careful, O, ye mothers in Israel, and do not teach your daughters
in future, as many of them have been taught, to marry out of Israel.
Woe to you who do it; you will lose your crowns as sure as God
lives. Be careful!’” (John Lewis Lund, The Church and the Negro,
1967, p. 55; citing Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 196).

“The seed of Ham, which is the seed of Cain descending through
Ham, will, according to the curse put upon him, serve his brethren,
and be a ‘servant of servants’ to his fellow creatures, until God
removes the curse; and no power can hinder it” (Brigham Young,
Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 279; Journal of Discourses 2:184. Also
cited by 10th President Joseph Fielding Smith, The Way to Perfection,
pp. 109-110.)

Book of Mormon

“No man can say that this book (laying his hand on the Bible) is
true, is the word of the Lord, is the way, is the guide-board in the
path, and a charter by which we may learn the will of God; and at
the same time say, that the Book of Mormon is untrue; if he has
had the privilege of reading it, or of hearing it read, and learning
its doctrines” (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 459. See also Teachings
of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, 1997, pp. 345-346. Parenthesis
in original).

Commandments

“Some of you may ask, ‘Is there a single ordinance to be dispensed
with? Is there one of the commandments that God has enjoined
upon the people, that he will excuse them from obeying?’ Not
one, no matter how trifling or small in our own estimation. No
matter if we esteem them non-essential, or least or last of all the
commandments of the house of God, we are under obligation
to observe them” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young,
p. 221. See also Journal of Discourses 8:339).

Constitution

The Saints Will Yet Save the Constitution – When the day comes in
which the Kingdom of God will bear rule, the flag of the United
States will proudly flutter unsullied on the flagstaff of liberty and
equal rights, without a spot to sully its fair surface; the glorious
flag our fathers have bequeathed to us will then be unfurled to
the breeze by those who have power to hoist it aloft and defend
its sanctity. 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. The present Constitution,
with a few alterations of a trifling nature, is just as good as
we want; and if it is sustained on this land of Joseph, it will be done
by us and our posterity. I expect to see the day when the Elders of
Israel will protect and sustain civil and religious liberty and every
constitutional right bequeathed to us by our fathers, and spread
these rights abroad in connection with the gospel for the salvation
of all nations. I shall see this whether I live or die” (Brigham
Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, pp. 360-361. Italics in original).

Creation

“We are the sons and daughters of celestial Beings, and the germ
of the Deity dwells within us. When our spirits took possession of
these tabernacles, they were as pure as the angels of God, wherefore
total depravity cannot be a true doctrine” (Brigham Young,
Discourses of Brigham Young, pp. 50-51).

Depravity, Total

“Many of us have been taught the doctrine of total depravity – that
man is not naturally inclined to do good. I am satisfied that he is
more inclined to do right than to do wrong. There is a greater
power within him to shun evil and perform good, than to do the
opposite” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 78).

Garden of Eden

“In the beginning, after this earth was prepared for man, the Lord
commenced his work upon what is now called the 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.” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young,
p. 102).

God

“Our God and Father in Heaven, is a being of tabernacle, or, in
other words, he has a body, with parts the same as you and I have;
and is capable of showing forth his works to organized beings, as
for instance, in the world in which we live, it is the result of the
knowledge and infinite wisdom that dwell in his organized body.
His Son Jesus Christ has become a personage of tabernacle, and
has a body like his Father. The Holy Ghost is the Spirit of the Lord,
and issues forth from himself, and may properly be called God’s
minister to execute his will in immensity; being called to govern
by his influence and power; but he is not a person of flesh as we
are, and as our Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ are” (Brigham
Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 24. See also Journal of Discourses
1:50).

Godhood

“Intelligent beings are organized to become Gods, even the Sons
of God, to dwell in the presence of the Gods, and become associated
with the highest intelligences that dwell in eternity. We are now
in the school, and must practice upon what we receive” (Brigham
Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 245).

“Having fought the good fight we then shall be prepared to lay our
bodies down to rest to await the morning of the resurrection when
they will come forth and be reunited with the spirits, the faithful,
as it is said, receiving crowns, glory, immortality and eternal lives,
even a fulness with the Father, when Jesus shall present His work
to the Father, saying, ‘Father, here is the work thou gavest me to
do.’ Then will they become Gods, even the sons of God; then will
they become eternal fathers, eternal mothers, eternal sons and
eternal daughters; being eternal in their organization they go
from glory to glory, from power to power; they will never cease to
increase and to multiply, worlds without end. When they receive
their crowns, their dominions, they then will be prepared to frame
earths like unto ours and to people them in the same manner as
we have been brought forth by our parents, by our Father and
God” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 283; Journal
of Discourses 18:259, October 8, 1876).

Gospel

“There is not that being that ever had the privilege of hearing the
way of life and salvation set before him as it is written in the New
Testament, and in the Book of Mormon, and in the book of Doctrine
and Covenants, by a Latter-day Saint, that can say that Jesus
lives, that his Gospel is true, and at the same time say that Joseph
Smith was not a Prophet of God. That is strong testimony, but it
is true” (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 459. See also Teachings of
Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, 1997, p. 345).

Marriage

“Be careful, O, ye mothers in Israel, and do not teach your daughters
in future, as many of them have been taught, to marry out of
Israel. Woe to you who do it; you will lose your crowns as sure as
God lives” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 196).

“You ought to love a woman only so far as she adorns the doctrine
you profess” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 199).

Matter

“There is an eternity of matter. Astronomers estimate that there is
between us and the nearest fixed star matter enough from which
to organize millions of earths like this. There is an eternity of matter,
and it is all acted upon and filled with a portion of divinity.
Matter is to exist; it cannot be annihilated. Eternity is without
bounds, and is filled with matter; and there is no such place as
empty space. And matter is capacitated to receive intelligence”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 48).

Perfection

“When we use the term perfection, it applies to man in his present
condition, as well as to heavenly beings. We are now, or may be,
as perfect in our sphere as God and angels are in theirs, but the
greatest intelligence in existence can continually ascend to greater
heights of perfection” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham
Young, p. 89).

Plan of Salvation

“This is the plan of salvation. Jesus will never cease his work until
all are brought up to the enjoyment of a kingdom in the mansions
of his Father, where there are many kingdoms and many glories,
to suit the works and faithfulness of all men that have lived on the
earth. Some will obey the celestial law and receive of its glory, some
will abide the terrestrial and some the telestial, and others will receive
no glory” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 56.
See also Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, p. 52).

Preexistence

“In regard to the battle in heaven, that Brother Truman O. Angell
referred to, how much of a battle it was I have forgotten. I cannot
relate the principal circumstances, it is so long since it happened;
but I do not think it lasted very long; for when Lucifer, the Son of
the Morning, claimed the privilege of having the control of this
earth, and redeeming it, a contention arose; but I do not think
it took long to cast down one-third of the hosts of heaven, as it is
written in the Bible. But let me tell you that it was one-third part of
the spirits who were prepared to take tabernacles upon this earth,
and who rebelled against the other two-thirds of the heavenly
host; and they were cast down to this world. It is written that they
were cast down to the earth. They were cast down to this globe-to
this terra firma that you and I walk upon, and whose atmosphere
we breathe. One-third part of the spirits that were prepared for
this earth rebelled against Jesus Christ, and were cast down to the
earth, and they have been opposed to him from that day to this,
with Lucifer at their head. He is their general—Lucifer, the Son
of the Morning. He was once a brilliant and influential character
in heaven, and we will know more about him hereafter” (Brigham
Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, pp. 54-55).

“The spirits of devils have been deprived of bodies, and that constitutes
their curse, that is to say, speaking after the manner of
men, you shall be wanderers on the earth, you have got to live out
of doors all the time you live. That is the situation of the spirits
that were sent to the earth, when the revolt took place in heaven,
when Lucifer, the Son of the Morning, was cast out. Where did
he go? He came here, and one-third part of the spirits in heaven
came with him. Do you suppose that one-third part of all beings
that existed in eternity came with him? No, but one-third part of
the spirits that were begotten and organized and brought forth to
become tenants of fleshly bodies to dwell upon this earth. They
forsook Jesus Christ, the rightful heir, and joined with Lucifer, the
Son of the Morning, and came to this earth; they got here first. As
soon as Mother Eve made her appearance in the garden of Eden,
the Devil was on hand” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham
Young, p. 68).

Repentance

“Some of our old traditions teach us that a man guilty of atrocious
and murderous acts may savingly repent when on the scaffold; and
upon his execution will hear the expression, ‘Bless God! he has
gone to heaven, to be crowned in glory, through the all-redeeming
merits of Christ the Lord.’ This is all nonsense. Such a character
never will see heaven. Some will pray, ‘O that I had passed
through the veil on the night of my conversion!’ This proves the
false ideas and vain notions entertained by the Christian world”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 157).

Temple

“There are many of the ordinances of the house of God that must
be performed in a temple that is erected expressly for the purpose.
There are other ordinances that we can administer without
a temple. You know that there are some which you have receivedbaptism,
the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, such
as the speaking in and interpretation of tongues, prophesying,
healing, discerning of spirits, etc., and many blessings bestowed
upon the people, we have the privilege of receiving without a temple”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 399).

Three Degrees of Glory

“We are placed on this earth to prove whether we are worthy to
go into the celestial world, the terrestrial, or the telestial or to
hell, or to any other kingdom, or place, and we have enough of
life given to us to do this” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham
Young, p. 87. See also Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham
Young, pp. 85-86).

Tithing

“The law of tithing is an eternal law. The Lord Almighty never
had his Kingdom on the earth without the law of tithing being
in the midst of his people, and he never will. It is an eternal law
that God has instituted for the benefit of the human family for
their salvation and exaltation. This is the law of the Priesthood,
but we do not want any to observe it unless they are willing to do
so” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 177. See also
Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Brigham Young, p. 155).

Tolerance

“If I should hear a man advocate the erroneous principles he had
imbibed through education, and oppose those principles, some
might imagine that I was opposed to that man, when, in fact, I am
only opposed to every evil and erroneous principle he advances”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 251. See also Journal
of Discourses 6:331, June 19, 1859).

Truth

“A fact is a fact, all truth issues forth from the Fountain of truth,
and the sciences are facts as far as men have proved them”
(Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 3).

“‘Mormonism,’ so-called, embraces every principle pertaining to
life and salvation, for time and eternity. No matter who has it. If
the infidel has got truth it belongs to ‘Mormonism.’ The truth and
sound doctrine possessed by the sectarian world, and they have a
great deal, all belong to this Church. As for their morality, many
of them are, morally, just as good as we are. All that is good, lovely,
and praiseworthy belongs to this Church and Kingdom. ‘Mormonism’
includes all truth. There is no truth but what belongs to the
Gospel. It is life, eternal life; it is bliss; it is the fulness of all things
in the gods and in the eternities of the gods” (Brigham Young,
Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 3).

“Our doctrine and practice is, and I have made it mine through
life—to receive truth no matter where it comes from” (Brigham
Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 11).

“A Duty to Listen to the Truth—Do not say, ‘You are Mormons,
and we do not want to hear anything about you.’ Wait until you
have searched and researched and have obtained wisdom to understand
what we preach, or to prove it to be untrue. If you cannot
prove it untrue and are not disposed to receive it, let it alone. If it
is the work of God, it will stand. What do you say, outsiders? What
do you say, Christian world and heathen world? If we have the
truth to present to you, which will do you good here and hereafter,
which will save you today and tomorrow and every day, until
it saves you in the Kingdom of God and brings you to a perfect
state of felicity and happiness in the presence of the Father, will
you have it?” (Brigham Young, Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 435).