LDS Faithful History:
LDS faithful history is history which has little to no basis in truth and cannot be substantiated with trusted historical accounts.
LDS Apostle Boyd K. Packer called faithful history:
“… history that bolsters belief and avoids awkward or embarrassing detail.”
One good example of LDS faithful history is found in a book entitled: “MOTHERS OF THE PROPHETS SERIES, Lucy Mack Smith, LISA J. PECK, 2004.”
While describing her book, Lisa Peck wrote:
“In the late fifties a new type of book was created called a ‘nonfiction novel.’ … Because the books were also novels, the author was offered the freedom to include what the people might have thought, felt, and said.” (MOTHERS OF THE PROPHETS SERIES, Lucy Mack Smith, LISA J. PECK, 2004, Foreword)
LDS Faithful History Continued:
“Joseph spoke, his voice full of energy, about retreating to the trees to pray as I had supposed. He had a vision where God the Father and His Son came down from Their thrones and visited him to tell him none of the churches were correct.” (MOTHERS OF THE PROPHETS SERIES, Lucy Mack Smith, LISA J. PECK, 2004, p. 49)
Any account of Lucy Smith knowing her son Joseph had a vision before his well-known 1823 bedroom vision is questionable to say the least. On this subject The Encyclopedia of Mormonism spells out:
“The Prophet does not suggest that he confided his first vision to his family, and his mother reports only that she had early knowledge that an angel later revealed the Book of Mormon.” (BYU Studies, Smith, Lucy Mack, by Anderson, Richard Lloyd / The Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Macmillan, 1992)
Also, Irene Bates, who spent a great deal of time studying Lucy Smith’s hand written history wrote:
“She [Lucy] remembers that her son’s famous first vision occurred in his bedroom at night, echoing the well established tradition of her husband’s own prophetic dreams.” (Lucy’s Book, … Introduction by Irene M. Bates, Signature Books / Salt Lake City)
The truth is, Lucy Smith went to her grave thinking that her son’s 1823 bedroom vision was his first vision:
“It appears that prior to this time [Moroni’s visit of the evening of September 21, 1823] Joseph had not related to his family his initial visionary experience of some three and one half years earlier in which he saw both God the Father, and Jesus Christ. It would also appear from the published text of an interview by Rev. Murdock that [Joseph’s brother] William was unaware of Joseph’s first vision as distinct from his visitation by the angel Moroni, as late as 1841.” (THE WILLIAM SMITH ACCOUNTS of JOSEPH SMITH’S FIRST VISION by Elden J. Watson © copyright 1999 Elden J. Watson)
Brigham Young University historian and LDS bishop, James B. Allen said,
“There is little if any evidence, however, that by the early 1830s Joseph Smith was telling the [first vision] story in public …” (The Significance of Joseph Smith’s First Vision in Mormon Thought, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Autumn 1966, p. 30).
More LDS Faithful History:
“Lucy Mack Smith, Joseph’s mother, knew the truth through revelation from the Holy Ghost: ‘When I heard this experience from my son’s trembling lips, knowing he wasn’t one for wild imaginations, and also knowing him to be true of character, I searched his face, his eyes, and studied his countenance. There was no doubt that this incredible tale was the truth… My boy was the instrument through whom the Lord had chosen to bring His message … We now knew without doubt that God lived and He was personally involved in our lives and He was going to see that the truth was brought back to the earth!’ (MOTHERS OF THE PROPHETS SERIES, Lucy Mack Smith, LISA J. PECK, 2004, p. 49)
The last quote is another great example of faithful history: stories that families put their faith in that are actually made up out of whole cloth.
Definition of Whole Cloth:
pure fabrication —usually used in the phrase out of whole cloth
(Merriam-Webster Dictionary online)
Lucy Smith History / Joseph Smith’s 1823 Bedroom Vision:
“… He called me by name, and said … he was a messenger sent from the presence of God to me, and that his name was Nephi; that God had a work for me to do, and that my name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindreds, and tongues; or that it should be both good and evil spoken of among all people …” (Biographical Sketches of Joseph Smith the Prophet and His Progenitors for Many Generations, Lucy Mack Smith, Coray/Pratt 1853, Chapter 18).
Most early accounts which mention an angel by name call the angel Nephi. Nevertheless, in Lisa Peck’s “nonfiction novel” she calls the angel Moroni:
“Later, Joseph Jr. saw an angel, Moroni, who repeatedly visited him. This angel instructed Joseph to live God’s laws.” (MOTHERS OF THE PROPHETS SERIES, Lucy Mack Smith, LISA J. PECK, 2004, published by Cedar Fort inc. p. 50)
- LDS Apostle Boyd K. Packer, Vern Anderson, ASSOCIATED PRESS / Salt Lake City / Los Angeles Times, August 10, 1991
For more information on this subject:
■ First Vision of Joseph Smith — Rich Kelsey
■ Nephi or Moroni, or Someone Else? — Rich Kelsey
■ Joseph Smith Treasure Seeking — Rich Kelsey
■ Joseph Smith on Trial — Rich Kelsey