The Iron Rod Podcast
The Iron Rod Podcast
Iron Rod 111 - D&C 19, 20, 23

We start off with the Articles of the Church of Christ, a revelation from God to Oliver Cowdery an uninspired, irrelevant “first draft” of D&C 20. Then we discuss D&C 19, which contains the final instructions to Martin Harris while also revealing a mystery of God. That leads into a discussion of the muddled history of April 6, with some records claiming the meeting was held at Fayette and others claiming it was held at Manchester, and we discuss an alternate narrative that resolves most of the conflict, and puts D&C 23 into a new light. We finish up with D&C 20, which contains the law of the church that is systematically violated every week.

Here’s where you can download the paper by Bryan Westover:

Ether 5:6

D&C 29:27-28

Mosiah 5:10-13

Matthew 25:41-46

Mark 3:28-29

D&C 29:29-30

D&C 76:40-48

Mosiah 16:1-5

Moroni 6:9

D&C 46:2

D&C 84:85

D&C 100:5-6

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One comment on “Iron Rod 111 – D&C 19, 20, 23

  1. Lee Williams Jan 23, 2021

    My friend, and independent LDS historian, Mike Marquardt, published a work in 2015 titled Historical Setting of Mormonism in Manchester, Ontario County, New York. This volume was reprinted from The John Whitmer Historical Association Journal Vol 35. It examines the historical events of the Joseph Smith Sr. family residence in Manchester and includes the earliest stories as heard by their neighbors. Perhaps you might enjoy some entries I found surprising– for example that the seer stone revealed the location of the plates, not the angel Nephi (or Moroni, your choice).

    It was in this township that Joseph acquired his peep stone as retold in the affidavit of Willard Chase in the Autumn of 1834:

    In the year 1822, I was engaged in digging a well, I employed Alvin and Joseph Smith to assist me; the later of whom is now know as the Mormon prophet. After digging about twenty feet below the surface of the earth, we discovered a singularly appearing stone which greatly excited my curiosity. I brought it to the top of the well and as we were examining it, Joseph put into his hat, and then his face into the top of his hat. It has been said by Smith, that he brought the stone out from the well, but this is false. There was no one in the well but myself. The next morning he came to me, and wished to obtain the stone, alleging that he could see in it but I told him I did not wish to part with it on account of its being a curiosity, but would lend it. After obtaining the stone, he began to publish abroad what wonders he could discover by looking in it, and made so much disturbance among the credulous part of the community that I ordered the stone to be returned to me again. He had it in his possession about two years.
    Sometime in 1825, Hiram Smith came to me and wished to borrow the same stone, alledging that he and Joseph wanted to accomplish some business of importance, which could not very well be done without the aid of the stone. I said that if he pledged me his word and honor, that I should have it when called for, he might take it which he did and took the stone. I thought I could rely on his word at this time, as he had made a profession of religion. Bu in this I was disappointed, for he disregarded both his word and honor.

    The story of Joseph Smith Jr. receiving a visionary experience in September 1823, with instructions to visit a nearby hill about a mile away each year, was expressed outside the Smith family as early as the fall of 1826. One year later Joseph related to his neighbor Willard Chase that he had taken a book of plates from a hill. In the Chase affidavit (December 11, 1833) he recalled that Joseph explained to him how he took the book out of the ground and hid it in a tree top. Ten days later he returned to get it,

    “found it safe, took off his frock, wrapt it around it, put it under his arm and ran all the way home, a distance of about two miles. He said he should think it would weigh sixty pounds, and was sure it would weigh forty. He observed that if it had not been for that stone (which he acknowledged belonged to me,) he would not have obtained the book.”

    New York journalist Joel Tiffany interviewed Martin Harris in 1859 when he was living in Kirtland, Ohio. Harris stated:

    Joseph had a stone which was dug from the well of Mason Chase. In this stone Joseph could see many things to my certain knowledge. It was by means of this stone he first discovered these plates.

    Martin’s wife and daughter visited the Smith home for a day in 1827 at the invitation of Lucy. Upon their return, Martin questioned them about their visit. Martin reports: “I questioned them about the plates. My daughter said they were about as much as she could lift. They were in the glass box, and my wife said they were very heavy. They both lifted them.” Martin wastes no time and travels to the Smith home and questions Joseph about the plates. Martin reports:

    Joseph said an angel had appeared to him, and told him it was God’s work. Joseph had before this described the manner of his finding the plates. He found them by looking in the stone found in the well of Mason Chase. The family likewise told me the same thing. Joseph said the angel told him he must quit the company of money-diggers.

    So, what I conclude from these first hand reports is that the angel did not reveal to Joseph the location of the plates. That information came to Joseph through the Chase peep stone.