Doctrine and Covenants Study
Joseph Smith’s Revelations, Doctrine and Covenants 73

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“Doctrine and Covenants 73,” Joseph Smith’s Revelations: A Doctrine and Covenants Study Companion from the Joseph Smith Papers (2020)

“Doctrine and Covenants 73,” Joseph Smith’s Revelations: A Doctrine and Covenants Study Companion from the Joseph Smith Papers

Doctrine and Covenants 73

Revelation, 10 January 1832

Source Note

Revelation, Hiram Township, OH, 10 Jan. 1832. Featured version copied [ca. 10 Jan. 1832]; handwriting of Sidney Rigdon; one page; Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU. Includes docket and archival marking. For more information, see the source note on the Joseph Smith Papers website.

Historical Introduction

This revelation instructed JS, Sidney Rigdon, and the other elders of the church to continue preaching “in the reagions round about” until the convening of another church conference. In accordance with direction given in a December 1831 revelation, JS and Rigdon had set aside their Bible revision work so they could preach to church members and others in the general vicinity around Hiram and Kirtland, Ohio.1 Their preaching, as well as that of other elders sent from Kirtland, was intended in part to combat misinformation and criticism published by former church member Ezra Booth in the Ohio Star.2 Following instructions in the December revelation to “call upon” the church’s critics “to meet you both in publick and in private,” Rigdon challenged Booth and Symonds Rider, a former member in Hiram, to defend their claims against the church in public, but neither man accepted.3 According to a later JS history, these efforts “did much towards allaying the excited feelings” that stemmed from Booth’s influence.4

JS and Rigdon returned to Hiram, Ohio, around 8 January 1832, and on 10 January JS dictated this revelation, “making known the will of the Lord” regarding what they and the elders should do until the next conference, which was held two weeks later.5 In addition to instructing JS, Rigdon, and the other elders to continue preaching, the revelation directed JS and Rigdon to renew their work on the Bible revision after the conclusion of the upcoming conference.

JS probably dictated this revelation to Rigdon in an upstairs bedroom of the John and Alice (Elsa) Johnson home where they worked on the Bible revision.6 A copy of the revelation inscribed by Rigdon was provided to Newel K. Whitney, the newly appointed bishop in Kirtland, perhaps shortly thereafter.7 The revelation’s instructions to the elders preaching in the area were probably spread through other copies or by word of mouth.

Hiram Portage county ohio Jan. 10th 1832

A Revelation to Joseph. and Sidney [Rigdon]. The word of the Lord unto them Concerning the Elders of the church of the Living God8 established in the last days, making known the will of the Lord unto the Elders what they shall do untill conference.9 [1]For For verily thus saith the Lord it is expediant in me that they should continue preaching the gospel and in exhortation to the churches in the reagions round about untill conference10 [2]and behold then it shall be made known unto them by the voice of the conference their severall missions.

[3]Now verily I say unto my Servents Joseph and Sidney saith the Lord it is expedient to translate again11 [4]and inasmuch as it is expedient practicable to preach in the reagions round about untill conference and after that it is expedient to continue the work of translating translation untill it be finished. [5]And let this be a pattern unto the Elders untill further knowledge even as it is written [6]and now I give no more unto you at this time gird up your loines and be sober12 even so Amen [1/2 page blank]