Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem
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Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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"Treasure Digging Podcast"

Radio Free Mormon: 057: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

consiglieri » Mon Oct 29, 2018 8:33 pm wrote: A new RFM podcast went up yesterday titled, "Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck."

I think it is a fun romp and hopefully worth a listen.

I may have uncovered a nugget or two in the process.

https://mormondiscussionpodcast.org/201 ... steinbeck/

All the Best!

--RFM
Shulem » Mon Oct 29, 2018 8:39 pm wrote:should be real good
Kishkumen » Mon Oct 29, 2018 8:48 pm wrote:Sweet! Thanks, consiglieri!
reflexzero » Mon Oct 29, 2018 9:49 pm wrote:Really digs down to the bottom of the issue.
Dr. Shades » Mon Oct 29, 2018 11:22 pm wrote:I see what you did there.
Kishkumen » Tue Oct 30, 2018 6:01 am wrote:Now I need to read Tortilla Flat!
Quasimodo » Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:09 pm wrote:Yes! Do read "Tortilla Flat." It's the most underappreciated Steinbeck book.
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:15 pm

The Greatest Treasure, “Section 111, The Greatest Treasure,” Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual (2002), 277–79

Historical Background

Section 111 is a good example of how understanding a revelation’s historical background can help us understand its spiritual significance.
In order to create an excuse to make it faith promoting. Anything to make it spiritual! Feel the Spirit! ®
The Kirtland Temple had been finished and dedicated in March 1836, leaving the Saints in Kirtland and the Church itself impoverished and deeply in debt. In addition, the troubles in Zion (Missouri) had also heavily taxed the spiritual and temporal resources of the Church, which was barely six years old at this time. Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, Oliver Cowdery, and Hyrum Smith left Kirtland in late July and traveled to Salem, Massachusetts. They rented a house, preached publicly, and went from house to house to teach the gospel. During their stay at Salem Doctrine and Covenants 111 was given (see History of the Church, 2:464–65).
The Church was broke and in debt. The prophet Joseph Smith was desperate. So why not go to Salem to find treasure?
Elder Brigham H. Roberts wrote: “Ebenezer Robinson, for many years a faithful and prominent elder in the church, and at Nauvoo associated with Don Carlos—brother of the Prophet—in editing and publishing the Times and Seasons, states that the journey to Salem arose from these circumstances. There came to Kirtland a brother by the name of Burgess who stated that he had knowledge of a large amount of money secreted in the cellar of a certain house in Salem, Massachusetts, which had belonged to a widow (then deceased), and thought he was the only person who had knowledge of it, or of the location of the house. The brethren accepting the representations of Burgess as true made the journey to Salem to secure, if possible, the treasure. Burgess, according to Robinson, met the brethren in Salem, but claimed that time had wrought such changes in the town that he could not for a certainty point out the house ‘and soon left.’” (Comprehensive History of the Church, 1:411.)
Burgess had knowledge of money and Joseph Smith loved money. Follow your nose where ever it goes!
Notes and Commentary

D&C 111:1–6. “I … Am Not Displeased … Notwithstanding Your Follies”
The Prophet Joseph Smith’s motives for following William Burgess’s suggestion to search for the hidden treasure in Salem were good, prompted by his love for the Saints and for the Church. It appeared that in one incredible stroke of good fortune the Church could gain money enough to clear itself of its debts and care for the suffering Saints in Kirtland and Zion. The leading elders had no thought of personal gain in the trip. So the Lord was not displeased with their journey, “notwithstanding [their] follies” (D&C 111:1).
I just love reading about the "follies" of Joseph Smith. It makes my ears tingle with delight to learn Smith was simply trying to get rich quick and his inspiration in doing so was totally worldly. Ha ha!
Their folly lay in the fact that less than three years earlier, the Prophet Joseph Smith had received counsel from the Lord about the Church’s indebtedness (see D&C 104:78–80; see also Notes and Commentary on D&C 104:78–80). At that time Church members were told that if they would humble themselves and seek through diligence and the prayer of faith to be relieved of their indebtedness, the Lord would send means for their deliverance. Now, still deeply in debt, Church leaders were trying to solve the financial difficulties of the Church through their own efforts. The Lord reminded them that He could give them power to pay their debts and that He would deal mercifully with Zion (see D&C 111:5–6).
I love putting the name Joseph Smith and FOLLY all in one sentence. Sweet. :lol:
Occasionally Church members with financial difficulties are tempted to seek relief in highly speculative investments. They focus on the hope that the Lord will take away their problems and reward their sincerity in a sensational way, when more often the Lord blesses us through quiet miracles or by giving us the means to work our way out of our problems. The lessons of section 111 are of great value to Saints in all circumstances.
Church members do get tempted including the prophet Joseph Smith. I wonder what kind of nasty temptations Russell M Nelson has been tempted with lately? What kind of folly has he exhibited?
The Lord allowed the Prophet Joseph to go to Salem, for in Salem was a treasure of much greater value to the kingdom than that for which they had come. There were many souls in Salem whom the Lord knew would accept the gospel. Their conversion would greatly benefit the Lord’s work because these new members of the Church would unite their efforts with those of the Saints and contribute generously to the cause of Zion.
Right. The Lord allowed Joseph Smith to go to Salem. He allowed it. He allowed him to get tempted, make a fool of himself, and greedily chase the Almighty dollar in a pursuit of folly. That's the Spirit! ®

:lol:
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Craig Paxton » Tue Oct 30, 2018 9:20 pm wrote:Aren’t you glad you’re not involved in the tête-à-tête between Infants on Thrones & Mormon Stories
consiglieri » Tue Oct 30, 2018 9:53 pm wrote:Me? I'm celebrating the 80th anniversary of the radio broadcast of the war of the worlds by listening to it. Having a great time all by myself. Well, me and Orson Welles to be accurate. Love you all!
annie » Wed Oct 31, 2018 9:30 am wrote:I haven't logged in for AGES - took me several goes to remember my password - but I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this podcast. Thank you Consiglieri!
Dr Exiled » Wed Oct 31, 2018 6:12 pm wrote:Consig:

This was one of your best podcasts to date, right up there with "wrong roads." Your reading Tortilla Flat brought back some memories of my high school years. I grew up on Salt Lake City, and went to school with a lot of G.A. kids and grandkids, including one of Nonsense Nelson's daughters (incidentally, she was instrumental in getting Grant Palmer fired as my seminary teacher and our seminary principal, but that is another story).

One of my english teachers assigned Tortilla Flat for the very reason that you read it and got into some hot water over it. He didn't go as far as you did in making the overt comparison to J.S. and his money digging. But the early 80's was when the truth about money digging was surfacing everywhere and the Tanners were as evil as ever. Precious minds cannot handle too much reality at once when santa clause still is a not too distant memory. Hence the censure.
Eyepatch » Sat Nov 03, 2018 10:44 am wrote:I really appreciate all the time Consig spends bringing us this great content. This podcast was especially good, and brought me up to speed on the "Salem" fiasco. Thanks.
cwald » Sat Nov 03, 2018 1:20 pm wrote:Downloading now.

Well hell, I've listened to more RFM and Infants on Thrones the last few months than I have over previous two years combined.
cwald » Sat Nov 03, 2018 4:19 pm wrote:OMG. That is easily the best rfm podcast to date. That is amazing research and wonderful nuggets of information to help understand Joseph Smith early life. Thanks.

I love this quote "Yesterday's exmormon and apostate criticism is today's LDS truth."
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Wed Oct 31, 2018 7:28 am

SALEM TREASURE QUEST

Image
By 1836 Joseph Smith and the church were heavily in debt. William Burgess and Don Carlos Smith conveyed a story to the leadership of the church of a building in Salem that had hidden treasure buried in its cellar. The church leaders saw an opportunity to ease the financial pressure the church was under at the time.

In August 1836 Joseph Smith Jr., Hyrum Smith, Oliver Cowdery, and Sidney Rigdon traveled to New York city to talk to their creditors, assuring them they could pay their debts. On their way back they stopped in Salem Massachusetts where they met up with Brother Burgess. Unfortunately he was unable to locate the correct house and went home. Joseph and the others remained in Salem until they felt they had found the right house. Joseph wrote to Emma:

‘We have found the house since Bro. Burgess left us, very luckily and providentially, as we had one spell been most discouraged. The house is occupied, and it will require much care and patience to rent or buy it.’

Letter to Emma Smith, 19 August 1836
Attempts at renting the house were apparently unfruitful and sadly no treasure was discovered. Joseph’s debts remained unpaid. Joseph received a revelation regarding this adventure recorded as Doctrine and Covenants, Section 111.

Follow the Spirit! ®

:lol:
Last edited by Shulem on Mon Nov 09, 2020 4:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Wed Oct 31, 2018 9:44 am wrote:
LOOK! Just in time for Halloween! (this is orange, not red)

Another interesting tidbit with possible connections to Joseph Smith's treasure digging activities:
Maggi Smith-Dalton -- A History of Spiritualism and the Occult in Salem: The Rise of Witch City wrote:Those who do not adhere to the narrative of a religious purpose for the Salem adventure point to an article in Ohio's Painesville Telegraph. The article claimed Salem contained buried (possibly pirate) loot. This starkly earthly motive was, by secular accounts, the true main focus of the journey. Joseph, of seer stone fame was simply plying his old trade of treasure hunting.

Sounds like Joe was money diggin again
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Wed Oct 31, 2018 5:34 pm

Joe and his buddies took off to Salem hoping to find buried treasure under a house but were sorely disappointed when they went back to Kirtland empty handed. What was ole Joe thinking? Did he feel the Spirit ® was actually guiding him and that treasure was going to be uncovered to pay Church debts? Is that what his companions actually thought at the time? Smith frequently spouted his mouth about how inspired he was and how what oozed from his lips was revelation. But this time, the so-called prophet got slapped down and had to delicately backpedal his way out of the mess he got himself into.

Here are statements he made to his wife Emma in a private hand written letter he wrote while in Salem:
Joseph Smith wrote:. . . . our buisness here cannot be determined as soon as we could wish to . . . .
Joseph Smith wrote:we had one spell been most discouraged
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Wed Oct 31, 2018 5:50 pm

More Treasures Than One
Joseph and other leaders had been told about a hidden treasure in Salem, Massachusetts, and hoped to find it.
Well, they did not find treasure and the debts in Kirtland were adding up. Salem was a rabbit hole.
Joseph and his three companions followed the direction in the revelation (D&C 111) to “tarry in this place” and spent several weeks in Salem, preaching and visiting historic places while hoping to obtain money to help pay Church debts and redeem Zion. But no documents exist indicating that they saw this revelation fulfilled in any way by the time they returned to Kirtland.
It was a lost cause. Smith gambled and he lost.
Like the four Church leaders who traveled to the East in 1836, we don’t know exactly what treasures the Lord intended to come from Salem.
Nobody knows. Smith backpedaled to get himself out of a tight squeeze and apologists just guess hoping to make anything stick.
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Wed Oct 31, 2018 9:04 pm

Joe rides into Salem gambling he'll be able to fund his Kirtland ventures by getting rich quick.

Image



But things didn't go so well.

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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Sun Nov 04, 2018 6:07 pm
Lord wrote:I, the Lord your God, am not displeased with your coming this journey, notwithstanding your follies.
So, does this mean you're pleased with Joe while riding into Salem looking for buried treasure in hopes of paying off Church debts and God (you) only know what else? If you're not displeased, Lord, then perhaps you're pleased with Smith's romp into Salem. Right? But what of his "follies" you mentioned? Please define what you mean by "follies". (Were they sexual in nature?) :twisted:

Lord wrote:I have much treasure in this city for you, for the benefit of Zion, and many people in this city, whom I will gather out in due time for the benefit of Zion, through your instrumentality.
You have much "treasure" ($$$) in Salem for Joseph Smith? Really? Will he ride out with it in a leather bag? Will he cash it in at the bank in Salem and then head to New York to pay off the debts of the Church? What are the "much treasures", that will benefit cash stressed Zion? It sounds very valuable. The Holy Spirit ® surely knows where the treasures are buried and will show Joe.

Lord wrote:Therefore, it is expedient that you should form acquaintance with men in this city, as you shall be led, and as it shall be given you.
Shall be "led"? Shall be "given"?

Will the Holy Spirit ® lead Joe to the treasures? That's what he came to Salem for, right?

Lord wrote:And it shall come to pass in due time that I will give this city into your hands, that you shall have power over it, insomuch that they shall not discover your secret parts; and its wealth pertaining to gold and silver shall be yours.
Now you're talking, Lord! This "secret" is so exciting. Joe is going to gain power over Salem and the Holy Spirit ® will lead him to the treasure ($$$). Give us gold! Give us silver! Give us treasure! Give us all that we came to Salem for!

Lord wrote:Concern not yourselves about your debts, for I will give you power to pay them.
The Kirtland banking society will be a great success. Thank you, Lord, for the prophecy!

Lord wrote:Concern not yourselves about Zion, for I will deal mercifully with her.
Like you did with when you attempted to establish Zion in Missouri but was thrown out and the Church lost its investments? The city and the temple were not built. No mercy there.

Lord wrote:Tarry in this place, and in the regions round about
And do what? Look for gold and silver? :lol:

Lord wrote:And the place where it is my will that you should tarry, for the main, shall be signalized unto you by the peace and power of my Spirit, that shall flow unto you.
Kind of like what you said about Jackson county Missouri? The Spirit ® didn't pan out on that venture, right Lord? But hey, just send the signal and let's see what comes of it.

Lord wrote:This place you may obtain by hire. And inquire diligently concerning the more ancient inhabitants and founders of this city;
Joseph Smith hasn't been able to acquire the house with the hidden treasures. He's thought about renting it or buying it but so far it's just not happening. The prophet is worried the treasures are going to slip through his fingers, Lord. He promised Emma that he'd find treasure this time. Please help!

Lord wrote:For there are more treasures than one for you in this city.
The more the treasure ($$$) the merrier! Bless thy Church with filthy lucre, O Lord!

Lord wrote: Therefore, be ye as wise as serpents and yet without sin; and I will order all things for your good, as fast as ye are able to receive them. Amen.
The Church will gladly receive as much treasure as you're willing to give, O Lord. Open up the windows of heaven and pour out a blessing upon thy saints so that the prophet can go to New York and pay off the debt as he visualized through the Spirit ®.

:lol:
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Re: Radio Free Mormon: Treasure Digging with Joseph Smith and John Steinbeck

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Shulem » Tue Nov 06, 2018 4:19 pm

Image

Treasures had by the prophet witness that the Church is restored.

:lol:
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