What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
[Joseph Smith]’s people marveled that he did so much when he was just one of them, and his accomplishments—translations, cities, mission, gatherings, priesthoods, temples, cosmologies, governments—are astonishing by any standard. Joseph Smith himself did not take credit for his achievements. All he could speak of was his “marvilous experience.” Perhaps his signal trait was trust in his own inspiration. He knew he was no more than a rough stone cut from a Vermont hillside. He told one audience “he was but a man,… a plain, untutored man; seeking what he should do to be saved.” But his revelations enabled him, as one scholar has said of prophets, “to do unaccustomed things.” It was his calling, as Joseph himself put it, to “lay a foundation that will revolutionize the whole world.” (Richard Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, pp. 560-1)
Yesterday while thinking of Joseph I was inspired to put together the following video montage, using clips from the recently released “Praise to the Man“. (Note: This is copyrighted material so I’m probably breaking the rules…)
Using another song and some different clips, I edited this one together as well:
Joseph Smith was and is a Prophet. His name, just as Moroni predicted, is being had for good and evil by countless individuals around the world. Despite what critics may bellow, Joseph was called of God, given a marvelous work and wonder to effectuate, and charged with being the key prophet in the times of restitution of all things. He saw and spoke with God, received the keys of the priesthood, translated and revealed new scripture, and interpreted the mind and will of God. The kingdom he helped establish lives on today and continues to grow in preparation for the Lord’s second coming.
The Standard of Truth has been erected; no unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing; persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame, but the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent, till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, till the purposes of God shall be accomplished, and the Great Jehovah shall say the work is done. (Joseph Smith, The Wentworth Letter)
Praise to the Man!