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Sermon delivered at Washington, D. C. on February 4(5), 1840
Source: Christian Advocate and Journal, March 6, 1840

A delegation of the "Mormons" having been in this city [Washington] some time, to seek remuneration of congress for their Missouri losses, Joseph Smith ("Jo Smith" as known to fame) has held one or two meetings here. I dropped in a little while on the evening of the 4th instant to see and hear.

The Book of Mormon Inspired

The Prophet, or inspired penman, (whichever title he prefers, for he averred to the meeting that he was inspired to write the golden Bible, or the "Book of Mormon," a copy of which he held in his hand,) is a stout, square-built man of about thirty or thirty-five years of age, of prepossessing manner, and look, and shrewd mind.

Prophet Appears Educated

He has evidently a good English education, and is an energetic, impassioned speaker.


The doctrines he professes in Washington are similar to those of the Campbellites of the west, laying great stress on baptism "FOR" the remission of sins. He quotes from the New Testament readily in his addresses. He took good care, as there was an intelligent congregation, including several members of congress, present, to say but little about the "Book of Mormon."

Book of Mormon not Contrary to Bible

He averred, however that nobody wrote it but him, and that it contained nothing contrary to the Bible, or its virtue.1

Joseph Eloquent

In describing the sufferings of his followers in Missouri he was somewhat eloquent, as he has a good voice for the pathetic.

1. Again the Book of Mormon theme surfaces. Compare the more detailed record of the sermon by Matthew L. Davis which is given in parallel there. We include it separately here since when parallelized with the Davis record the ordering of the text is different. The sermon is given the date February 4 here instead of 5 by Davis.

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