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Topic
The Constitution: Divine Origin


Quotes

“We have been assured, sir, in the sacred writings, that ‘except the Lord build the house they labor in vain that build it.’ I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without His concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel; we shall be divided by our little partial, local interests, our projects will be confounded and we ourselves shall become a reproach and a byword down to future ages. And, what is worse, mankind may hereafter, from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing government by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war, or conquest.” (Benjamin Franklin)


“Before I left St. George, the spirits of the dead gathered around me, wanting to know why we did not redeem them. Said they, ‘You have had the use of the Endowment House for a number of years, and yet nothing has ever been done for us. We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized from it, but we remained true to it and were faithful to God.” (Wilford Woodruff, JD, 19:229. September 16, 1877.)


“And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me. Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land; And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.(Scriptural, Doctrine and Covenants, 98:5-7. August 6, 1833.)


“The Constitution of the United States is a glorious standard; it is founded in the wisdom of God. It is a heavenly banner;” (Joseph Smith, HC, vol. 3, p. 305. March 25, 1839.)


“According to the laws and constitution of the people, which I have suffered to be established, and should be maintained for the rights and protection of all flesh, according to just and holy principles; That every man may act in doctrine and principle pertaining to futurity, according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment. Therefore, it is not right that any man should be in bondage one to another. And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood.” (Scriptural, Doctrine and Covenants, 101:80. December 16, 1833.)


“There are those, our Heavenly Father, both within and without our borders, who would destroy the constitutional form of government which thou hast so magnanimously given us, and would replace it with a form that would curtail, if not altogether deprive, man of his free agency....We pray thee that thou wilt inspire good and just men everywhere to be willing to sacrifice for, support, and uphold the Constitution and the government set up under it and thereby preserve for man his agency....We pray that kings and rulers and the peoples of all nations under heaven may be persuaded of the blessings enjoyed by the people of this land by reason of their freedom under thy guidance and be constrained to adopt similar governmental systems, thus to fulfil the ancient prophecy of Isaiah that '. . . out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.' ” (George Albert Smith, Idaho Falls Temple Dedicatory Prayer)


“Now, there are many things that I might talk about, tonight, but I want to raise my voice to you and say, our Heavenly Father raised up the very men that framed the Constitution of the United States....Yet, there are those who go around whispering and talking and saying, 'Let us change this thing.' I am saying to you that to me the Constitution of the United States of America is just as much from my Heavenly Father as the Ten Commandments. When that is my feeling, I am not going to go very far away from the Constitution, and I am going to try to keep it where the Lord started it, and not let anti-Christs come into this country that began because people wanted to serve God.” (George Albert Smith, Conference Report, April 1948.)


“Have mercy, O Lord, upon all the nations of the earth; have mercy upon the rulers of our land; may those principles, which were so honorably and nobly defended, namely, the Constitution of our land, by our fathers, be established forever.(Scriptural, prayer offered at the dedication of the Kirtland temple. Doctrine and Covenants, 109:54.)


“As the British Constitution is the most subtle organism which has proceeded from progressive history, so the American Constitution is the most powerful work ever struck off at a given time by the brain and purpose of man.” (William E. Gladstone, four time prime-minister of Britain)


“I counsel you, I urge you, I plead with you, never, so far as you have voice or influence, permit any departure from the principles of governments on which this nation was founded, or any disregard of the freedoms which, by the inspiration of God our Father, were written into the Constitution of the United States.” (Heber J. Grant, Conference Report, October 1944.)


“The Constitution will never reach its destiny through force. God's principles are taken by men because they are eternal and true and touch the divine spirit in men. This is the only true way to permanent world peace, the aspiration of men since the beginning. God never planted his Spirit, his truth, in the hearts of men from the point of a bayonet.” (J. Reuben Clark, The Constitution, Conference Report, April 6, 1957.)


“The great objects which presented themselves [to the Constitutional Convention] ... formed a task more difficult than can be well conceived by those who were not concerned in the execution of it. Adding to these considerations the natural diversity of human opinions on all new and complicated subjects, it is impossible to consider the degree of concord which ultimately prevailed as less than a miracle.” (James Madison)


“I can well recollect, though I believe I cannot convey to others, the impression which, on many occasions, was made by the difficulties which surrounded and pressed the [federal] convention. The great undertaking sometimes seemed to be at a stand; at other times, its motion seemed to be retrograde. At the conclusion, however, of our work, many of the members expressed their astonishment at the success with which it terminated.” (James Wilson)


“Doctor Rush then proceeded to consider the origin of the proposed [Constitution], and fairly deduced it [was] from heaven, asserting that he as much believed the hand of God was employed in this work as that God had divided the Red Sea to give a passage to the children of Israel, or had fulminated the Ten Commandments from Mount Sinai.” (Benjamin Rush)


“I have so much faith in the general government of the world by Providence that I can hardly conceive a transaction of such momentous importance [as the framing of the Constitution] ... should be suffered to pass without being in some degree influenced, guided, and governed by that omnipotent, omnipresent, and beneficent Ruler in whom all inferior spirits live and move and have their being.” (Benjamin Franklin)


“The real wonder is that so many difficulties should have been surmounted [in the federal convention], and surmounted with a unanimity almost as unprecedented as it must have been unexpected. It is impossible for any man of candor to reflect on this circumstance without partaking of the astonishment. It is impossible for the man of pious reflection not to perceive in it a finger of that Almighty hand which has been so frequently and signally extended to our relief in the critical stages of the revolution.” (James Madison)


“It appears to me…little short of a miracle that the delegates from so many different states (which states ... are also different from each other in their manners, circumstances, and prejudices) should unite in forming a system of national government so little liable to well-founded objections.” (George Washington)


“When the general convention met, no citizen of the United States could expect less from it than I did, so many jarring interests and prejudices to reconcile! The variety of pressing dangers at our doors, even during the war, were barely sufficient to force us to act in concert and necessarily give way at times to each other. But when the great work was done and published, I was not only most agreeably disappointed, but struck with amazement. Nothing less than that superintending hand of Providence that so miraculously carried us through the war…could have brought it about.” (Charles Pinckney)


“[The adoption of the Constitution] will demonstrate as visibly the finger of Providence as any possible event in the course of human affairs can ever designate it.” (George Washington)


“For my part, I sincerely esteem it a system which, without the finger of God, never could have been suggested and agreed upon by such a diversity of interests.” (Alexander Hamilton)


“I can never trace the causes which led to these events without.admiring the goodness of Providence. To the superintending Power alone is our retraction from the brink of ruin to be attributed. A spirit of accommodation was happily infused into the leading characters of the continent, and the minds of men were gradually prepared.for the reception of a good government.” (George Washington)


“The United States enjoy a scene of prosperity and tranquility under the new government that could hardly have been hoped for.” (George Washington)


“Tranquility reigns among the people with that disposition towards the general government which is likely to preserve it.… Our public credit stands on that [high] ground which three years ago it would have been considered as a species of madness to have foretold.” (George Washington, Letter to David Humphreys, 1791.)


“Politics are the divine science, after all.” (John Adams, Letter to James Warren The American Enlightenment, p. 189. June 17, 1780.)


“How is it possible that any man should ever think of making it [politics] subservient to his own little passions and mean private interests?…is the end of politics a fortune, a family, a gilded coach, a train of horses, and a troop of livery servants, balls at Court, splendid dinners and suppers? Yet the divine science of politics is at length in Europe reduced to a mechanical system composed of these materials.” (John Adams, Letter to James Warren The American Enlightenment, p. 189. June 17, 1782.)


“The benefits of the constitution and laws are alike for all; and the great Eloheim has given me the privilege of having the benefits of the constitution and the writ of habeas corpus.” (Joseph Smith, History of the Church, 5:471.)


“We say that God is true; that the Constitution of the United States is true; that the Bible is true.” (Joseph Smith, Teaching of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 147-48.)


“I want to say to every man, the Constitution of the United States, as formed by our fathers, was dictated, was revealed, was put into their hearts by the Almighty, who sits enthroned in the midst of the heavens; although unknown to them, it was dictated by the revelations of Jesus Christ, and I tell you in the name of Jesus Christ, it is as good as I could ask for.” (Brigham Young, July 14, 1850.)


“…that statement of the Lord, ‘I have established the Constitution of this land,’ puts the Constitution of the United States in the position in which it would be if it were written in this book of Doctrine and Covenants itself. This makes the Constitution the word of the Lord to us. That it was given, not by oral utterance, but by the operation of his mind and spirit upon the minds of men, inspiring them to the working out of this great document of human government, does not alter its authority.” (J. Reuben Clark, Conference Report, p. 90. April 1935.)




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