Signs of the Times

1834-04

Millennial Harbinger Campbell, Alexander, 1788-1866

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Campbell, Alexander. “Signs of the Times.” Millennial Harbinger 5, no. 4 (April 1834):148,note.

. . . I would say nothing to the disparagement of this deluded people. But ’tis a disgrace to the Christian character, to the name, to any man who has ever read a Bible, to believe that absurd book, called “the book of Mormon.” It is a matter of astonishment and grief to think of a man in the exercise of reason, for one moment, to give credit to this wretched bundle of lies. It must have been written by an ATHEIST, who did not believe that God would ever call him to judgment for lying in his name. A Yankee trick to make money. The author must have studied barrenness of sentiment and expression, a poverty of style, without an equal in the English language, for the purpose of deception. It carries condemnation in every page. One thing rightly considered, is sufficient to condemn it in the eye of all common sense, setting aside the total lack of evidence throughout the whole work—God never demands faith without evidence.

The great charge is this, it anticipates the Christian religion practises its precepts, ordinances, and teaches its doctrines and worship five or six hundred years before Christ. Such a thing would have been just as illegal as to practise the Jewish religion now; or, by the blood of bulls and goats, to make atonement for the sins of the soul. God has never had two systems of salvation in operation at the same time. If the Jewish system of salvation was of God, it was in full force, was the only legal system of salvation, until abrogated by divine authority. No human being ever did, or ever will foresee, nor dare he, anticipate and practise aforehand the religion of a future dispensation. Before a second be in force and virtue, the first must be done away.

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