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Joseph Smith  — Section 61

Was Joseph Smith a prophet or imposter?

Representative of a Christian Church:
Why is Joseph Smith honored among your people when Christ said, “A prophet hath no honor in his own country”.

Missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:
Thousands of books and articles have been written against Joseph Smith and his name, as he himself said, had become an emblem of both good and evil among all nations.  I want you to know this day, gentlemen, that Joseph Smith was truly a great man.  From the moment of his first vision in 1820, until his last breath in 1844, he was sentenced or put on trial 48 times and he lived in constant tyranny and persecution.  He was tarred and feathered, beaten, and his family and loved ones cruelly mobbed.  He never lost the dignity of his office and was a man of God after the highest order.  A group called the Carthage Greys vowed they would not so much as eat until they had spilled his blood, and many of his friends turned out to be his “Judas”.  He was honest and dealt with all men in an honest and God-fearing way.  He was one of the greatest prophets of all times.  Several days before his death, with tears in his eyes, this great Lieutenant General of the Nauvoo Legion, a prophet of the most High God, stood before his people for the last time and expressed his love for them.  Then he said, “Greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his life for his friend.”  The prophet voluntarily gave himself up to a tyrant governor who had pledged protection, and two days later his blood was spilt by the Carthage Greys and a vicious mob.  His blood and the blood of his brother, Hyrum, was shed in the Carthage, Illinois jail.  This occurred on June 17, 1844.  He lived a as a prophet, and he died as a prophet.  Gentlemen, we have appreciated this opportunity today.  I bear you my personal witness that I know Joseph Smith was a prophet, that this Church is divinely guided today, and that the things we have borne witness to are true.  May God bless you to find the truth is my sincere prayer.

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