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History 1301 - Surely I Have Contemplated the Things of God

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History 1301

18, November, 2010


Joseph Smith Jr.

"Surely I have contemplated the things of God"

Joseph Smith Jr. was born December 23, 1805, in Sharon, Vermont; he was the fifth of eleven children of goodly parents Joseph Smith and Lucy Mack (lds.org1). Joseph Smith Jr. is memorable person for several reasons: He claimed to have seen God and Jesus. He founded the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and he became a martyr for that church. Joseph Smith Jr. was a man led by God and his life is a reflection of that fact. (lds.org2)

Joseph was not a well educated man because he did not attend school. There were a lot of mouths to feed and all the children were inclined to work on the farm to help out their parents. Education was not ignored altogether; the children were encouraged to read the bible and to attend church. Young Joseph had trouble choosing a church to follow and at the time there was a spiritual awakening happening. It weighed so heavily on his mind that he prayed often and read his scriptures even more. One day when he was 15 he went into a grove to pray for the purpose of asking God which church was right. He claims to have seen two personages: God and Jesus. He was informed that all churches were good but all had it wrong. Jesus said," they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof." He was persuaded not to join any church. ( 3)

On September 21, 1823 Joseph has another vision and see's an angel named Moroni. He is taught many different principles and shown objects that will be useful for the restoration of Jesus' church. The next couple of years were hard on Joseph. He underwent


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