Why does the LDS Church keep pushing for more and more converts, when they already have close to thirteen million?
The answer . . . because there is a behind-the-scenes agenda of a secret church organization of which most are unaware. The dynamics of this organization, which began during early Mormon history, have continued down to the present time, controlling every president of the church since Joseph Smith, and is the real motive for why the LDS Church expends so many dollars into their missionary program.
Authors, John Heinerman and Anson Shupe in the Mormon Corporate Empire, warn that the Mormon hierarchy’s success with this secret agenda will be “directly related to general public ignorance about their methods and ends.” (1)
The intent of this article is to put an end to that ignorance.
What’s It All About?
The secret organization that Joseph Smith created, the real infrastructure, was a later invention, and the second organization that he generated. The first one, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, organized April 6, 1830, is familiar to everyone:
The public organization–the visible structure of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with its unique doctrines, was referred to by Joseph Smith as the “Church of God.” Members believe, because it was started by God and Jesus Christ appearing in person to Joseph Smith, that at the Second Coming and the ushering in of the thousand year millennial reign, Jesus will acknowledge the LDS Church as the only true church.
But, the second organization, organized March 11, 1844, is what is proving so shocking to those who are just now learning about it:
The secret organization–the political machinery of the priesthood, officially named the “Kingdom of God” (also called The Government of God)–a separate organization distinct from the church, led by men holding the priesthood. Joseph Smith claimed he received the full name in a revelation on April 7, 1842: “The Kingdom of God and His Laws, with Keys and Power Thereof, and Judgment in the Hands of His Servants, Ahman Christ.” (2)
This organization was to be governed by a group of fifty men who were sworn to secrecy about its existence under penalty of death. (3) Called the Council of Fifty, historian, D. Michael Quinn explains in The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, it was also called the Grand Council. (4) It was to be “the ultimate governing body for all mankind.” (5) When members of the Council died, they were replaced, so that the Council would continue down through the years.
The Kingdom of God’s agenda has obsessed Mormon leaders more than anything else. So, what is it exactly?
The Mormon Church, through its political organization, the Kingdom of God, says John J. Stewart in Joseph Smith the Mormon Prophet, plans on gaining a political stronghold in the U.S. government. The goal is to “bring the United States Government under the rule of the priesthood.” (6)
This is reiterated by John Heinerman and Anson Shupe:
For them the prophecy [of Daniel 2:31-45] says that the Mormon people and the resources of their corporate empire will be the prime movers in a millennial overthrow of the United States government.” (7)
Eventually, their ultimate aim is to create an ecclesiastical, one-world government.” (8)
This means, as Brigham Young stated in the Journal of Discourses, “no more or less than the complete overthrow of the nation, and not only of this nation, but the nations of Europe”. (9)
Believing this goal to materialize sooner, Brigham Young declared, according to historian Bancroft, that “he would himself become President of the United States, or dictate who should be President.” (10)
Further, Joseph Smith, as well as all succeeding Presidents of the Church, determined that this new government would be a theocracy, not a democracy.
A theocracy is a form of government in which God or a deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, with that God’s or deity’s laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical [church] authorities. . . .a system of government by priests claiming a divine commission.
The primary motivation was to prepare the world for Christ’s Second Coming and the millennial reign, and since Mormons believe that it is the only true church that God recognizes, it is imperative when that time comes that Mormon leaders be in charge. But, if their agenda can be achieved before the Millennium by establishing more Mormons in politics and increasing their membership worldwide, so much the better.
The Biblical passage the LDS Church uses to validate their political organization is Daniel 2:31-45, which describes a stone which is to roll through the whole earth and destroy all other governments. Verse 44 is quoted often:
And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. (v. 44 KJV)
While the general membership interpret Daniel’s vision as the LDS Church and its theology, Joseph Smith actually taught that the stone referred to the political system, The Kingdom of God.
President John Taylor describes how Mormon leaders expect their world rule:
The priesthood will be the only legitimate ruling power under the whole heavens; for every other power and influence will be subject to it. When the millennium… is introduced all potentates, powers, and authorities-every man, woman, and child will be in subjection to The Kingdom of God; they will be under the power and dominion of the priesthood of God. (11)
Brigham Young said:
We are called the State Legislature [of Utah], but when the time comes, we shall be called The Kingdom of God, political. . . . For the time will come when we will give laws to the nations of the earth. (12)
In more modern times, Apostle Bruce R. McConkie, in Mormon Doctrine, reaffirms the agenda:
During the millennium . . . the church . . . will have the rule and government of the world given to it. (13)
To keep non-Mormons from becoming alarmed and finding out about their political agenda, church leaders do not, according to historian, Klaus J. Hansen, in The Theory and Practice of the Political Kingdom of God in History, publicize this. If they were asked about it, they would feel it necessary to deny it:
In a logical attempt not to arouse the already excited non-Mormon world further, Church leaders thought it wise to publicize their true aims regarding the political Kingdom of God as little as possible. At times, the leaders felt it necessary to flatly negate political aspirations. (14)
Distinction Between the LDS Church and the Political Kingdom of God
Once again, it’s important to understand that the organization of the Mormon’s political Kingdom of God is not synonymous with the church–nor was it ever an organization within their church. It was a separate entity, although it grew out of the church and was directed by men holding the Mormon priesthood. Mormon historian, Dr. Hyrum L. Andrus, in Joseph Smith and World Government, explains this distinction:
[The church] with its priesthood authority, was the body out of which the political [organization] was to be developed, and, since the priesthood was thereafter to have power to name men to political office . . . the government of God could be said to grow out of the Church. But following the appointment of men to political office there was then to be a constitutional separation of powers between Zion [the church] and the political government. In this way the Church and the State were to be separate bodies; for example, in our present Federal government the judicial branch, in a sense, grows out of the executive branch, in that its officers have their origin as judges in the nomination of the President. But following such nominations and a vote of consent by the Senate, federal judges become separate and independent officers, subject only to the covenants and by-laws which govern their actions in office. So also with Zion and her political government: the latter was pictured as growing out of the former body, but thereafter there was to be a constitutional separation of powers between the two organizations. (15)
Crowning of a King
The political kingdom is just that–a kingdom, so requires a king. Therefore, in anticipation of a theocratic rule, it had to be headed by a king, not a president. In preparation for this, Joseph Smith declared himself king over all the earth, and was ordained as such. (16) Two of his Apostles, Lyman Wight and Heber C. Kimball referred to Smith’s title as, “President Pro tem of the world.” (17)
Smith believed he “held his political office by divine right and not by sovereignty.” (18) Claiming to be a descendant of Joseph through Ephraim, he felt he should “rule over all Israel . . . and ultimately the Jews and Gentiles,” indicating his vision of global domination. (19)
Thinking to hurry the project along, the Council of Fifty had Joseph Smith announce his candidacy for President, hoping to achieve their goal sooner. They immediately sent out missionaries to electioneer for him. However, Smith was assassinated before this could materialize. (20)
Since the President of the Church is usually the person to hold this title, down through the years succeeding Presidents, Brigham Young, John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and Lorenzo Snow, were also ordained kings by the Council of Fifty. (21) There is also strong indication that this practice is still in operation with present-day leaders. (22)
The Political Kingdom’s Constitution
The Council of Fifty patterned their constitution after the Constitution of the United States. The U.S. Constitution was seen as a divine stepping-stone, instituted by God, which would lead to the eventual establishment of the Mormon’s political Kingdom of God.
However, the Council made one distinct modification. It would not be a government of the people or by the people. Modern-day Apostle, Bruce R. McConkie, makes this clear: “The Church (or kingdom) is not a democracy. He further says:
Legislation is not enacted by the body of people composing the organization; they do not make the laws governing themselves. The Church is a kingdom. The Lord Jesus Christ is the Eternal King, and the President of the Church, the mouthpiece of God on earth, is the earthly king. All things come to the Church from the King of the kingdom in heaven, through the king of the kingdom on earth. There is, of course, the democratic principle of common consent whereunder the people may accept or reject what the Lord offers to them. Acceptance brings salvation; rejection leads to damnation. (23)
In this kind of government, there would be no election of officers–men would be appointed by Mormon revelation. The common people would have no say, and no voting rights. All power would reside in one small council.
The Move Westward
After Joseph Smith’s death, the Council of Fifty continued their political machinery when they migrated to the Great Salt Lake Valley under the leadership of Brigham Young.
Most people believe that the Mormon pioneers’ wilderness trek was unplanned and that it was solely religious persecution that forced them to leave the last minute and flee to Utah. This was only part of it. Both members and non-Mormons fail to realize that the Kingdom of God’s Council of Fifty, long before the migration took place, were already talking about a journey westward, and had made the actual plans to situate the membership in the West. The Council first discussed Texas as their choice, but it was the Salt Lake Valley that eventually materialized.
Why did they want to move? Because the Council and Church leaders, according to Dr. Hyrum Andrus, wanted to move to a territory where they could set up a political nation all to themselves. He says:
In this great project, the General Council played a dominant role. …it was that body of men who laid the plans for the exodus and thereafter made all major decisions in carrying out the project. This fact has not been known to historians. It appreciably alters the existing concept of the move to the West, in that it indicates that the initiative in these matters was not taken by the Church as a religious body, but by men acting in a political capacity under the direction of the priesthood. (24)
With the Council of Fifty’s political Kingdom laying the plans and making all major decisions pertaining to the move, their new Utah government (called Deseret at that time) was to be a stepping stone to taking over the United States, and eventually the world.
Dr. Andrus adds that the historian, Bancroft, misunderstood when he wrote that the Mormon government in Utah was under the control of the church’s ecclesiastical leaders. Actually, they were under the political control of the Council of Fifty. Also, other historians erroneously saw it as “a pure theocracy” with a “complete fusion of church and state,” (25) who believed the Utah government was “merely a “spontaneous government” that grew out of the immediate needs of the settlers. (26) In all cases, wrong. Outsiders just didn’t realize what was going on politically.
Therefore, contrary to historians, the exodus west was a political movement, not a religious one, although the membership were, and still are, led to believe the latter. The movement was a way to realize, as Klaus J. Hansen says in Quest For Empire, “as many of the ideals of the political Kingdom of God as possible before affiliation with the United States.” (27)
Dr. Andrus writes that upon their arrival in the Great Basin, the Council incorporated itself into the legislature and immediately became its political government. (28) The Council of Fifty dictated all nominating and appointing. There was no need for parties. Klaus Hansen describes the way it was:
The Council of Fifty, in creating the State of Deseret [Utah], paid lip service to the doctrine of the sovereignty of the people and the democratic practices of a constitutional convention and free elections. . . . Since the Council of Fifty controlled both the executive and legislative branches of government, the leaders of the political Kingdom of God, through the probate courts, could influence the administration of the counties. (29)
The Civil Voting Procedure
The people did, however, have a kind of vote, but not as we visualize it. The names of those appointed were presented to the people for a vote of consent, which was called “The Law of Common Consent.” But, a vote of consent was not the same as a vote of choice, or an election as we know it. When a Mormon was asked to vote, or to raise his or her hand to that effect, it simply meant they were confirming God’s choice and were faithfully supporting both priesthood leaders and those appointed. No one dared to oppose.
President John Taylor describes this early, so-called voting privilege. The first part of what he says is deceptive, because it sounds like he’s extolling the members’ free agency:
The proper mode of government is this– God first speaks, and then the people have their action. . . . They are free: they are independent under God. The government of God is not a species of priestcraft . . . where one man dictates and everybody obeys without having a voice in it. We have our voice and agency, and act with the most perfect freedom . . .
Sounds impressive, doesn’t it? However, listen to what he adds:
Still we believe there is a correct order-some wisdom and knowledge somewhere that is superior to ours: that wisdom and knowledge proceeds from God through the medium of the Holy Priesthood (30)
So, in one breath Taylor proclaimed the free agency of members, but in the next breath explained how it really is and what one was expected to do. This kind of rhetoric is typical of all cult leaders. Described as ‘slick operators’ by two Doctors of Psychology in an article in USA Today, cults “emphasize the victim’s freedom of choice, after tactfully constraining the alternatives.” (31)
There were a rare few who bravely dissented, but they were threatened with excommunication, as Stanley S. Ivins describes in the Millenial Star:
Elections were held but they did not mean much. A single list of properly selected candidates would be submitted to the people, who would go through the motions of voting for them. There was no law against voting for someone else, but the balloting was not secret, so that anyone not voting right could be easily identified and branded an apostate. And since apostacy [sic] was just about the greatest of sins, very few wanted to be charged with it.’ (32)
However, to impress both members and outsiders during this early period in Utah, on April 6, 1896, the church issued a “Political Manifesto” which included the statement that “The Church has never tried to interfere in the affairs of state.” (33) In a way it was double-talk. By having a separate political organization, church leaders could, of course, say the “church” wasn’t involved. But, since political leaders also held offices in the church, the two were so closely entwined that even members had difficulty distinguishing the difference.
One of the early apostles, Moses Thatcher, wouldn’t sign the Political Manifesto because, as Abraham H. Cannon wrote, “he saw it as a misleading statement of the past and present attitude of the church leaders in political matters.” (34) But, when he refused, they threatened him with excommunication . . . the worst thing that can happen to a Mormon.
Later, when Utah was forced to accept a two party system, the Council still had the last word. They decided who were to be Republicans and who were to be Democrats. Bishops even went so far as to dictate that those sitting on one side of the congregation were to be Democrats and those on the other side, Republicans. (35) Since the Republican Party was the political kingdom’s favorite, it was understood, as Stanley S. Ivins said, that those “who were Republicans, would [be allowed to] campaign for their party, [but] those who were democrats would remain silent.” (36)
The above method of civil appointments by the Council instead of the people was such a driving force, that it was incorporated into the church system as well. It was to function when members were called to ecclesiastical positions. Therefore, it is the LDS model for both church and state.
The Council of Fifty and Today’s Church
One might say, “Maybe they don’t have a Council of Fifty anymore. Perhaps they don’t follow the same line of thinking anymore because they teach that a present-day prophet (the President of the Church) can supersede what former ones taught.
Each President of the Church does have the right to supercede previous doctrines, as was done in 1978 when the ban on African Americans joining the church was lifted, in what is commonly referred to as the “Black Revelation.” But the Kingdom of God and the Council of Fifty, along with its agenda, is something that would never be dismissed. Klaus Hansen states that since “world government was to be one of the Council’s primary missions,” the modern-day Church leaders are not going to do away with it. (37)
However, it is correct that leaders no longer tell members how to vote in state or national elections. This came as a disappointment to many in the church. When I was a member I recall when I heard this announcement. At the time, others and myself felt very disheartened. We wanted our prophet to tell us which presidential nominee to vote for. We believed he was a recipient of heavenly revelation and would naturally know which candidate God approved of. But, even with no longer being told, we still knew that the church favored the Republican Party.
Yet, in spite of this change in policy, the Law of Common Consent, the raising of members’ hands to confirm those appointed within the church, is still operative today. If a Mormon dares vote contrary to church appointed leaders, claimed to have been called by revelation, he or she is called in for the dreaded interview. If the individual doesn’t repent, excommunication is inevitable.
However, it is believed that at some time in the future the church will change its present policy of not telling their members what issues, or candidate they should vote for in elections. When this happens, it is believed that while members may not be told outright how to vote, it will be politely suggested. Again, no one would dare refuse. The membership will be expected to rally behind whatever issues, or candidates the leaders decide need a majority vote–and leaders can communicate their wishes within a matter of hours.
This is accomplished through a networking system, which “communicate[s] messages with amazing speed.” One church leader boasted that by using each local ward’s telephone tree, “[he] can make sixteen calls, and by the end of the day 2,700 people will know something.” (38)
Further, the Mormon Church’s Information Systems Division anticipates that via their satellite systems, “the General Authorities [church hierarchy] will be able to notify as many as three million Church members throughout the U.S., Canada, and Mexico in less than an hour!” (39)
The point is that if the Mormon Church gains any future kind of political control in the nation, the above kind of theocratic government and voting procedure will be operative.
Persistence of the Church and Council
Though unable to fully implement their Kingdom of God at present, the Council of Fifty, working shoulder to shoulder with the leaders of the Mormon Church, await the day when their political goal will be achieved.
They believe it will happen when the world will be in such chaos that it will be more than ready for their theocratic government. According to Dr. Andrus, they believe that at that point, world governments will beg the Mormon Church to step in and help. (40) Further, members continually reiterate an old prophecy Brigham Young attributed to Joseph Smith, that one day the Constitution will hang by a thread, and the Mormon elders will be called in to save it. (41) President, Heber C. Kimball stated:
The President of the United States will bow to us and come to consult the authorities of this church to know what he had best do for his people. You don’t believe this. Wait and see.” (42)
Both the Church and the Council believe the this goal will be propelled more quickly if Mormons are encouraged to run for government positions–better yet, if one runs for President. With the Council of Fifty in control, as Dr. Andrus explains, “God could then dictate through revelation the affairs of His [political] kingdom on earth.” (43)
Will the Council Actually Control Mormon Politicians?
Will a Mormon politician prove to be one of those who, after gaining his or her office, buck the LDS leaders when pressured by them to vote a certain way? Or, will he act according to his own conscience? It would certainly be difficult, in view of the precedent laid down by the church in their Political Manifesto on April 6, 1896, and as reported in the Deseret News:
It had always been understood that men holding high church positions should not accept political office without first obtaining the approval of ‘those who preside over them.’ In line with this policy, the signers of the manifesto agreed that before any ‘leading official’ of the church accepted a political position, or nomination for such a position, he should apply to the ‘proper authorities’ for permission. (44)
If a Mormon politician who holds the Melchizedek priesthood in the church and other significant positions first need permission to run, and his standing in the church rests upon his subservience to the leaders who told him, “Yes, you have our permission to pursue a political career,” once in office they would certainly be hard pressed to refuse any Grand Council or Church leader’s suggestion about how to pass or not pass on some bill or vote on an issue.
Some politicians may do exactly as they are told, not having a strong enough nature to withstand the church’s persuasive techniques, while others may be strong and refuse to obey, as in the following example:
In 1965, church leaders tried to influence Mormon congressmen. LDS President, David O. McKay and his two counselors, who would also be members of the Council of Fifty (with McKay as King) contacted eight congressmen and three senators, asking them to vote to repeal Section 14B of the Taft Hartley Act. One Congressman said he would vote that way, but only because he already felt so inclined. Five signed a letter saying they would not. (45)
Whether some would refuse to follow orders is anyone’s guess. Certainly, the public would never know if they succumbed, since any influence on them would be conducted in private.
However, if they do prove strong enough to refuse, Heinerman and Shupe say that church leaders still continue to “exercise [their] corporate strength as a powerful lobbying force in the nation’s capital.” (46)
How Could Non-Mormons be Swayed to Succumb to a Theocratic Government?
One thing that might influence the majority of non-Mormons is that world conditions might become so bad that the Mormon Kingdom of God, if a dominant force by then, will provide them with much needed protection and civil advantages. Further, individuals who are lone unbelievers among a majority who have acquiesced, would find it uncomfortable, if not impossible to coexist in that society. A sample of this kind of difficulty is already evident with Christian families who have moved to Utah and, as outsiders, have been subjected to the community’s prejudice and ostracism.
Joining the Political Kingdom, but not the Church
During this time of Mormon rule, individual non-Mormons might decide to join the Mormon political Kingdom of God, but not the church. Yet, Kingdom leaders will expect it. Recognizing that some may refuse to embrace Mormon theology, Brigham Young describes what he expects church leaders will say to them in that day:
They [Mormon appointed leaders] will say [to the world’s non-Mormons], “We offer you life
[meaning Mormon membership and heavenly exaltation]; will you receive it?” “No,” some
will say. “Then you are at perfect liberty to choose death: the Lord does not, neither will
we control you in <(Indent whole paragraph)>the least in the exercise of your agency.
We place the principles of life before you. Do as you please, and we will protect you in
your rights, though you will learn that the system you have chosen to follow brings you
to dissolution?to being resolved to native element.” (47)
Once again, cult double-talk, assuring one of their free agency, but at the same time telling them the awful consequences if they exercise it. And what did Brigham Young mean by “dissolution” and “native element?”
He believed that those who come under the Mormon Kingdom’s political jurisdiction for civil protection, but refuse to join the Mormon Church, will become Sons of Perdition and be cast into outer darkness. Their ultimate fate, according to Mormon belief, will not be to suffer in Hell eternally, but eventually have their identity annihilated. (48) Their body and spirit will be reduced back to the common elements out of which they were created, namely, intelligence, the basic non-destructible eternal material out of which everything was created. (49) Young often used the example of the potter and the clay to show that when a vessel is no longer useful it is crushed and placed back into the common lump to be molded into something else.
Hopefully, leaders won’t consider carrying out the doctrine of “Blood Atonement” on dissenting individuals as was done in the early period of Utah, and which is practiced today in some of the fundamentalist groups. Under this doctrine, they murder those whom they consider apostates as a means of saving their soul. They believe that the shedding of Jesus’ blood on the cross is insufficient to cover the sin of apostasy, so the individual must provide his own atonement and have his own blood shed. It is the leaders’ responsibility to see that this is done, so that some degree of salvation can be provided for the apostate.
The Kingdom’s Capitols
When the political Kingdom of God reigns, the Church is not going to set up the capital in Salt Lake City. There will be two political headquarters. Independence, Missouri will be the capital for the western hemisphere, often referred to as the New Jerusalem or Zion. (50) Orson Pratt explains this in The Seer:
The law for the government of all nations will go forth from Zion [Missouri], the same as the laws for the government of the United States now go forth from Washington. (51)
Jerusalem on the other hand, will be the capital for the eastern hemisphere.
A Mandatory Law of Consecration
Anyone forced by intimidation to join the church must adhere to an economic policy called the United Order, or Law of Consecration. Everyone will be expected to live communally and share all finances and material goods equally. It was practiced in Brigham Young’s day, and some Mormon Fundamentalist groups practice it today. While it is a noble endeavor, it is not without problems. Leaders become competitive, greedy and power-hungry, and end up exerting unrighteous dominion over their subjects that often results in abuse, or worse.
Does the Church Today Have a Council of Fifty?
Jerald and Sandra Tanner, in their book, Mormonism: Shadow or Reality? said they had contacted a Mormon who claimed to have spoken with LDS Apostle B.H. Roberts “in which Roberts claimed that the Council of Fifty was established by revelation and would always be a part of the church.” (52) In addition, Heinerman and Shupe state that the Council of Fifty “operated openly within Mormonism with aspects of their goal in mind as late as 1945.” (53)
A Modern-day King
It is strongly believed that today, within secret councils, the Council of Fifty follow the same procedure as Joseph Smith and succeeding church presidents–that of ordaining every President of the Church as head of the Council of Fifty and crowning him king in a special ceremony. Heinerman and Shupe claim that this ordination is still practiced:
Though the ceremony of coronation continues to this day, it is not publicized outside the Church. Conducted privately with only a few members of the Church hierarchy permitted to attend, it is nevertheless an explicit recognition that the Kingdom of God is to be a political and spiritual reality. (54)
Since the Mormon temple ritual for the general membership continues to anoint men to eventually become kings, and women to be queens, this practice is not out of context. (55) (See this endnote for details about the ceremony.)
Growth of the Mormon Church
The Mormon Church will indeed be a force to reckon with, especially if their projection of 90 million by 2030 AD proves true. (56) The Evangel reported that if the church’s growth rate remains the same, in the year 2050 they would reach a membership of 157 million. (57) (The membership count includes children of members baptized at the age of eight.)
The magnitude of the church’s influence is not unrealistic when considering the increasing number of converts. “Mormons are making important strides behind the scenes,” say Heinerman and Shupe. (58) If the Mormon Church can convert enough people to their church to control votes, as well as gain enough political inroads in the nation through their own politicians, their hope is that the political Kingdom will be realized before Jesus comes–perhaps not fully, but at least to some extent.
Will their Agenda be Successful?
Heinerman and Shupe answer the question:
Their success [will be] directly related to general public ignorance about their methods and ends. (59)
The purpose of this article has addressed just that–to provide information to dispel the ignorance, present the possible long-range risks of Mormons in government, and let the reader be the judge.
© Copyright 2008. This story cannot be copied and/or used in a professional publication without express permission of the author.
(1) John Heinerman and Anson Shupe, The Mormon Corporate Empire, (Boston, Beacon Press, 1985), p. 28. (Italics mine)
(2) D. Michael Quinn The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, (SLC, Signature Books), p. 112.
(3) D. Michael Quinn’s Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, 128, quoting from William Clayton’s diary, 1 March 1845, in Smith, An Intimate Chronicle, 158.
(4) They could also appoint a few non-Mormons. See D. Michael Quinn’s Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, p. 128. Smith taught that the world should be governed by a “theo-democracy.” This was to be achieved through the Council of Fifty and he was to be King over all the earth.
(5) J.D. Williams, “The Separation of Church and State in Mormon Theory and Practice,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Summer, 1966, pp 46-47.
(6) Jerald Tanner and Sandra Tanner, Mormonism–Shadow or Reality? (Salt Lake City: Modern Microfilm, 1972), p. 417. Hereinafter, Tanner and Tanner.
(7) Heinerman and Shupe The Mormon Corporate Empire, p. 19.
(8) John J. Stewart, Joseph Smith the Mormon Prophet (Salt Lake City: Mercury Pub. 1966), 204. (Italics mine)
(9) Journal of Discourses, Vol. 18, Joseph F. Smith, ed, p. 341.
(10) History of Utah, p. 505, as cited in Tanner and Tanner, p. 421. (Italics are the Tanner’s).
(11) Journal of Discourses, VI, 25.
(12) Dale Morgan, ”The State of Deseret,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 8 (1940): 139-140. See also, Heinerman and Shupe, p. 21.)
(13) Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, (Bookcraft, Salt Lake City, 1979), p. 416.
(14) Klaus J. Hansen, “The Theory and Practice of the Political Kingdom of God in Mormon History, 1829-1890” (Master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, Department of History, Provo, Utah, 1959), 15-16. Hereinafter, Hansen. Cited in Heinerman and Shupe, p. 22.
(15) Hyrum L. Andrus, Joseph Smith and World Government, (Salt Lake City, Hawkes Pub. 1972), p. 21. Hereinafter, Andrus.
(16) D. Michael Quinn, Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, p. 124.
(17) D. Michael Quinn, Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, p. 124.
(18) Hansen, Quest for Empire , p. 67.
(19) G.T.M. Davis in article in the St. Clair Banner, September 17, 1844, p 2. Cited in Tanner and Tanner, p. 416.) See also, Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power by D. Michael Quinn, pp. 55, 124, 138, 643.
(20) Robert Bruce Flanders Nauvoo: Kingdom of the Mississippi, 299, 301 and 302. Cited in Tanner and Tanner, p. 416.
(21) For John Taylor’s anointing, see “Daily Journal of Abraham H. Cannon”, Dec. 2, 1895, 198, quoted in Tanner and Tanner, 417-418. For Brigham Young’s coronation, see Klaus Hansen, Quest for Empire, 66. For Wilford Woodruff and Lorenzo Smow’s, see Heinerman and Shupe, p. 20.
(22) “Daily Journal of Abraham H. Cannon,” Dec. 2, 1895, p. 198. Cited in Tanner and Tanner, pp. 417-418.
(23) McConkie, Bruce R. Mormon Doctrine, p. 416. (Italics mine.)
(24) Andrus, p. 69.
(25) Leland H. Creer, “The Evolution of government in Early Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly, January 1958, p. 27, quoted in Andrus, p. 87.
(26) Dale Morgan, “The State of Deseret,” Utah Historical Quarterly, VIII, April, July, October, 1940, p. 79. Cited in Andrus, p. 87.
(27) Hansen, Quest for Empire, p. 127.
(28) John D. Lee, A Mormon Chronicle, 80-82. Cited in Andrus, 91.
(29) Hansen, Quest for Empire, 128, 131-132.
(30) Andrus, Joseph Smith and World Government, 91. (Italics mine.)
(31) Susan M. Andersen and Philip G. Zimbardo, “Resisting Mind Control,” USA Today, November 1980, p. 46.
(32) Tanner and Tanner, p. 420, quoting Stanley S. Ivins in Millenial Star, Vol. 29, (date unknown): p. 746.
(33) Tanner and Tanner, p. 423. See also, Deseret News, April 6, 1896.
(34) Tanner and Tanner, p. 423.
(35) J.D. Williams, “The Separation of Church and State in Mormon Theory and Practice,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, (Summer, 1966): p. 38.
(36) Tanner and Tanner, p. 422, quoting Stanley S. Ivins, The Moses Thatcher Case (publisher and date unknown).
(37) Hansen, p. 65.
(38) Anson Shupe, The Darker Side of Virtue (Buffalo, NY, Prometheus Books, 1991) p. 19.
(39) Heinerman and Shupe, 57. (Italics mine)
(40) Andrus, p. 116. (Italics mine)
(41) Journal of Discourses, 2:182. Brigham Young attributes this teaching to Joseph Smith: “Will the Constitution be destroyed?” . . . and as Joseph Smith said, “The time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread.” See also, 7:15, and 2:182.
(42) Journal of Discourses, Vol. 5, p. 93, quoted in Tanner and Tanner, Mormonism — Shadow or Reality?, 418) Italics are the Tanners.
(43) Andrus, 15-16.
(44) Deseret News, Salt Lake City, April 6, 1896, cited in Tanner and Tanner, p. 423.
(45) Wallace Turner, The Mormon Establishment (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1966), pp. 292-293.
(46) Heinerman and Shupe, p. 28.
(47) Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, VI, 345-346. (Italics mine.)
(48) Journal of Discourses, 7:57.
(49) Apostle John Widtsoe confirms Brigham Young’s teaching: “that the ultimate punishment of the sons of perdition may be that they, having their spiritual bodies disorganized, must start over again, must begin anew the long journey of existence repeating the steps that they took in the eternities before the Great Council was held.” Evidences and Reconciliations by John A. Widtsoe, 1960, p. 214. See also Journal of Discourses 7:57. Erastus Snow, in Journal of Discourses, 7:358-359, in speaking of the second death, also reiterated Brigham Young’s teaching saying this is what was meant in Matthew 10:28, speaking of destroying both soul and body in Hell.
(50) Andrus, p. 29. See also Doctrine & Covenants 57:1-4; Book of Mormon: Ether 13.
(51) Orson Pratt, ed., Liverpool, The Seer, a collection of articles published in the Millenial Star, (Published by Franklin D. Richards, London, no date on book.) II, May 1854, p 266.
(52) Tanner and Tanner, p. 417. See also Tanner and Tanner’s article, “Will Benson Be King?” p. 42 in the Salt Lake City Messenger (April 1980): pp. 1-2.
(53) Heinerman and Shupe, 20.
(54) Heinerman and Shupe, 20.
(55) The first, or general, endowment available to members today, only ordains members to become Kings and Queens, Priests and Priestesses. Modern members interpret the ritual as something which will materialize in heaven when they become gods over their own planets. However, Mormon fundamentalists and other researchers, insist there was a unique endowment in early Mormon history, called the ‘second’ endowment, which actually ordained individuals as Kings, on the spot. They, as well as others, believe this is secretly being practiced today, but only among the church hierarchy. But, it is no secret that the second endowment, or second anointing, was practiced. Today, leaders say it was a prerequisite to receiving the second Comforter (the first comforter is the Holy Ghost, the second is the Savior). This meant that after one had this second ordinance, one could “see the face of the Lord and live, even though being in the flesh.” (See Journal of Discourses 9:87.) If this should happen, the Lord would personally declare to an individual, “Your calling and election is made sure.” One’s salvation and exaltation in the Celestial Kingdom is then assured regardless of what sin one might commit in mortality in the future. Whether the second endowment is the same under which Joseph Smith was crowned King is unclear. Some Fundamentalist groups today offer the ordinances of the second endowment, and crown their leader as king under which all male members achieve certain ranks of nobility. I received a letter some years ago from a Mormon I had known before he joined Alex Joseph’s Fundamentalist group. His personality had completely changed since he acquired “nobility”. He also wrote in King James English on stationery that had a coat of arms. (See also Michael W. Homer, “Similarity of Priesthood in Masonry,” 27, no. 3 Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought (Fall 1994): 34.)
(56) Heinerman and Shupe, 81.
(57) The Evangel, Vol. XXXIX, July-Aug.1992, No. 5.
(58) Heinerman and Shupe, p. 28.
(59) Heinerman and Shupe, p. 28. (Italics mine)
The following is a summary of the distinction between the LDS Church and the Council of Fifty’s political organization:
I. The Mormon Church contains two facets:
A. The Public facet – the visible Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints”
1. Belief of the general membership:
a. Jesus, at the second coming, will acknowledge the Mormon
Church as the only true church.
b. Missionaries, including the membership, are to convert as
many as they can to provide a Kingdom of subjects for
Jesus to rule.
c. The membership expect Mormon leaders to be appointed
as spiritual rulers during the millennium.
d. They also believe Daniel’s prophecy of the stone cut out
of the mountain means the Mormon Church and its
B. The Private facet – The (political) Kingdom of God, or One- World
Government (also called The Government of God.)
a. a separate organization from the Church, led by a Council of Fifty.
b. Leaders believe Daniel’s prophecy of the stone filling the earth
means their political kingdom
c. The President of the Church will be ordained king over the
Council of Fifty, and the new world order.
d. Priesthood leaders will rule by divine appointment, not by election.
e. The one world government will have two capitals: the western
hemisphere will be Jackson County, Missouri; Jerusalem will
be the capital for the eastern hemisphere.
f. The Mormon government will not be a democracy. The Law of
Common Consent will operate.
g. An economic policy called a United Order will be practiced by
those living within the boundaries of “Zion.”
C. Methods of achieving the political kingdom:
a. acquire world-wide membership as quickly as possible
b. implement full scale public relations and media campaigns
c. Accumulate corporate wealth.
d. establish Mormons in key political positions.