From Polygamist’s Daughter to A Child of the King
“For behold, I reveal unto you a new and an everlasting covenant; and if ye abide not that covenant, then are ye damned; for no one can reject this covenant and be permitted to enter into my glory.” Doctrine and Covenants 132:4
This “revelation” on plural marriage was recorded by Joseph Smith in 1843, but historical records indicate that Smith had known of the principle of what he referred to as the “new and everlasting covenant” since 1831.
What is this NEW and EVERLASTING covenant? Was it really so important that anyone not living by its principles would be kept out of God’s eternal glory? According to the Bible, only the rejection of Jesus Christ’s death on the cross in payment for our sins will prohibit anyone’s entrance into God’s glorious kingdom. But now, Joseph Smith has a new, and better and everlasting covenant revealed to him? By calling it “new” and “everlasting”, in essence, it would become a covenant that supercedes Christ’s forgiveness of our sins through His death on the cross. This then makes “salvation through polygamy” the key to heaven rather than Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on our behalf the power unto salvation.
This particular revelation that Joseph Smith recorded in Section 132 of the Doctrine and Covenants, (D & C), would radically change marriage practices of the Mormon people and their descendants for many generations to come. This new revelation that Joseph Smith claimed he had received from God was called “polygamy” or “plural marriage.” According to Smith, God instructed him that living this “principle” would be a requirement for anyone seeking celestial glory or “godhood.”
And so, the practice of polygamy dominated the lives of the Mormon people for many decades. Polygamy ruled! And lives were ruined! And hearts were broken! And hopes and dreams of countless many were shattered!
In 1890, in order for Utah to become admitted into the Union, the leaders were required to abolish the practice of polygamy and pass laws against it. They promised to do that, but at first, few of them really gave up the practice. There ensued many years of legal threats and arrests, even prison for some polygamists, and finally the public practice of polygamy began to diminish. However, many small groups were secretly being formed specifically to continue this “holy” practice of the new and everlasting covenant of Joseph Smith’s. The covenant that condemned hell and destruction upon those who did not faithfully live it out in this life.
It was into one of these highly secretive polygamist groups that I was born. Born and raised and condemned from the beginning to become a polygamists wife. I grew up dreading and hating the thought of living my life out in such a way; forced to marry an old man who already had a dozen or more wives and countless children, and becoming nothing but a baby factory myself.
My mother had been my father’s second wife - he only had two. In these groups, the first wife and first family generally are the favorites and receive preferential treatment - and our situation was no different. Some plural families of the group all live together, others do not.
Ours did not. We lived on a farm. Growing up on a farm isn’t bad, if you’re not living in a polygamist home. Life is already tough, but they made everything tougher. They believe that the more miserable our life is here, the more glory we will receive in the hereafter. As a result of that belief, many people, my mother included, welcomed misery and miserable conditions. Proof of Satan’s deceitful blinding work on humans.
There are many untold and unimagined horrors growing up in a home like this. Life really was miserable. Our family was poor, very poor. We lived in a small shack of a house, it was always dirty and cluttered. There was a tremendous amount of work to do and not enough children to do it all nor enough hours in the day or week. The farm was the “stewardship” that the polygamy group entrusted to the patriarch and he was to make it profitable. So we were each worked meaner and harder than any child should ever be worked.
Physical abuse was a major part of our childhood. Corporal punishment was fierce and frequent. Rubber hoses were often used on my brothers. A particular spanking tool that was used was a small, flat, metal fire-shovel which shoveled ashes out of our coal stove.
The shovel part was about 6 or 7 inches long and about 4 inches wide. I remember my mom used this on one of my younger brothers every day for a week. At the end of the week she showed me his bottom - all the blood veins were broken, his entire bottom was red and covered with spiraled broken purple and red veins. It made me sick. I began to hate my mother! None of us kids were exempt nor escaped her physical abuse.
Other methods of abuse were also used. When I was 13 years old, my mother locked me in my room for two weeks. I could eat, drink and go to the bathroom, but that was it. I think the only reason I was finally set free was because the school wondered what happened to me and insisted she send me back, so back to school I went. I remember many, many times through the years, walking home from school, dreading getting home, hoping all the way home that when I got in the house I would find my mother dead on the floor. Although later in life I finally forgave my mom, I never really ever felt guilty about wishing her dead.
Guilt feelings were a big issue in my emotional dysfunction, but as I grew older and into maturity, oddly, I never felt guilty about that. As I look back on my experiences living in this group, I marvel now that anyone can possibly believe all the stuff they believe. Yet, people believe it, with a passion! There are definitely brainwashing, mind-controlling techniques which they use to keep the people in bondage to their system. Tools they use are guilt and fear and they use them very effectively.
When I was 16 or 17 years old, my father told me that he wanted me to let him make all my decisions for me until I was 19 years old, then he would be able to trust me to be on my own. He told me at that time, that he was going to see to it that I got to heaven if he had to boot me all the way there! I got the boot a lot! It didn’t occur to me at the time, or for many years yet, that God didn’t want people in His heaven who had to be booted there. They come willingly or they don’t come at all.
A few days after I turned 18, (I had already made plans in advance and had packed up a small box of things), in the middle of the night I slipped out the back door and ran away. I was gone! I was free! No longer under their thumb. But woe to those who jump from the frying pan and into the fire! I had been raised in a very sheltered, mind controlled environment. I had never made my own decisions and was so naive I didn’t even know what the word naive meant. I did not have a personality, I was an empty shell of a person, totally incapable of making decisions, good or bad, and so I fell into very bad company. It took me seven years to get away from him.
It took me a lot of years to learn how to handle life. After many years of fear, heartache, having a child, suffering deep emotional pain and misery, after many broken dreams and hopelessness, after a divorce and facing a bleak future - one day, many years after I had fled the polygamy group, I discovered the truth about God!
You see, I had learned to hate God. From childhood I had learned that God demanded absolute perfection from us. He was the one who required poverty, pain and polygamy. He was the one who was ready to send souls to hell for even thinking about leaving the very group which they claimed was the “ Kingdom of God” on earth. I was taught that if I didn’t follow all the rules of the family and of the polygamy teachings, God’s hatred would be aimed at me. God would get me if I didn’t give them all my money, all my loyalty, and be ever ready to lie and die for them. So I learned to hate this God who demanded the impossible and had requirements like polygamy, He whose rules and demands hurt families, women and children. I ran from God all my adult life. Don’t talk to me about going to church! Don’t tell me to read the Bible. God was mean, vindictive, hateful. Why should I follow Him? Why should I risk being pulled under His hateful thumb again?
I had never been taught about the love of God. That idea was never introduced to me. As for Jesus, all I knew about Him was that He was Satan’s spiritual brother climbing His way to godhood. I never once was taught that Jesus Himself was God or that the Cross was really God’s provision for me, and for the whole world, His only provision. I had learned that we all had to work our way to heaven if we wanted to go there, so the cross had nothing to do with salvation as far as I knew. I was taught that Jesus died to become a “god” which in reality perverted His sacrifice into something selfish and self-serving. The actual salvation of our souls through His work on the Cross was something that was NEVER taught to me. We were required to WORK and earn our own way into heaven.
Of course, the required works were the works of the polygamy group. I met this God of love in a very strange way. No one witnessed to me in person. God knew that if anyone tried to talk to me about Him, I wouldn’t have ears to hear. So He didn’t send a person, He sent books instead. Books and tapes. Being extremely bored for a period of several days, I picked up a book that someone had left lying around and thumbed through it a little bit. Its title was “Mama, Mormonism and Me” written by Thelma Geer. Now, I am the one who hated God, religion and anything close to either one, so I never read religious material. But, being in a state of boredom I read a few lines or paragraphs here and there as I thumbed through the book. Then I put the book down.
A day or two later, still bored, I picked up the book again and repeatedly thumbed through it, reading interesting portions about the early history of Mormonism. I found some shocking information written down and so became very interested, I wanted to know more!
So I decided to start from the beginning of the book and read the whole thing! Not far into the book I came across a very strange phrase - it was in a sentence that became the turning point in my life. It said: “God loves you...” What? My eyes stung with tears. I read and re-read that phrase over and over again. God loves me? I’d never heard that before. I had always believed He was out to get me - I had never been taught there was an ounce of love in God’s character. Of course, the polygamist’s “god” was the only one I had ever been taught about, and now I know he isn’t even a real person and certainly not God!
I had to know more about this love of God and so began my journey to the truth. I finished that book, appalled and astounded at the awful and illegal things the Mormons did in their early history. The blood oaths, the forcing of polygamy on people and ruining so many families, their blood atonement practices and other atrocities these people did all in the name of “God!” I was finding out that this god was really no god at all. I began to read the Bible a little bit. I got ahold of other material that dealt with early Mormon history, not the whitewashed version the LDS church would like everyone to read, but the real, documented history of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young.
As I read, I compared much of what I had been taught about God with Mormon doctrine and with the Biblical record. I soon discovered that the early Mormons had taken and effectively twisted every Biblical teaching they used, fashioning it into their own perverted doctrines. I soon realized that the doctrines of the Mormon Church and the polygamy group are not solid biblical truths at all.
I was ecstatic and overwhelmed when I first discovered the Scripture verses which brought Christ into my life:
• We are saved by grace through faith and not by works, Ephesians 2:8-9.
• And that by confessing with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and believing in my heart God raised Him from the dead, I would be saved - Romans 10:9-10.
I read that God had promised to preserve His written word forever and ever - Isaiah 40:8 and Mark 13:31. I knew then that if God promised it, He could and WOULD do that very thing. From that moment on, I knew that I could trust everything that I was reading in the Bible. I discovered through my Bible reading–
• That Jesus and Satan are not spiritual brothers,
• That there is no pre-existence,
• That there was no war in heaven and
• No spirit babies waiting to receive an earthly body.
• I found that God never did command polygamy, in fact was against it.
• I discovered that the Trinity is a sound and solid Biblical doctrine,
• And that we do not and cannot become gods of our own worlds,
• That there is, always has been, and always will be only one God anywhere.
It became evident that Joseph Smith was a false prophet, teaching the people a false gospel, false gods and a false salvation plan through a false Jesus. The evidences of all this is overwhelming and cannot honestly be denied.
I discovered God’s love for me and how He proved His love for me on the Cross that day 2,000 years ago! I discovered the joy of knowing the gospel in its divine simplicity: that Jesus Christ had made payment for my sins and all I had to do was believe that simple truth and accept this wonderful Savior into my heart and life. I learned that God is always ready to forgive our sins, but it isn’t an automatic forgiveness from Him, we need to humbly and truthfully ask for it.
The truth I learned that I cherish most deeply is the truth of Who Jesus really is. He is not Satan’s spiritual brother. Jesus Christ is God Almighty Himself, the creator of all that has been created, and Satan, who was Lucifer, is a created being. I was and am grieved that the victims of Joseph Smith’s perverted doctrine, in teaching they are brothers, have taken Jesus down to the same level as Satan, and lifted Satan up to the level of Jesus.
Thankfully, Jesus is not merely our “older brother’ who is just a ways further on the road to exaltation than we are. I learned the truths of the Bible with such joy that words cannot describe it. I would read the Bible constantly, devouring its lovely truths. It was such fun and wonderful relief to learn that God really isn’t the hateful, vindictive God that I was taught about. I was so excited to learn the truth I could hardly stand it. I wanted to shout it to the world, get on the roof tops and yell to all the polygamists and Mormons in the world, that God wasn’t pleased with all their “good works” gospel. They could rest in and trust Him for their salvation because of His finished work done for them. Oh, how I wanted to tell others, and I did, and oh, how I was ridiculed.
I found myself crying often, sad that I had spent my whole life running from the only thing that was good for me, from the only Person who could really help me. I was sad that I hadn’t been born and raised in a Christian home, sad that I hadn’t been able to raise my child in a Christian home. On the other hand, was so happy that I had finally found the truth, happy that I could tell my child about His truth, happy that my child became a Christian too. The tears I shed were a mixture of joy and heavy-heartedness. Joy in the simple salvation God had given to me, sad that most of my family were still in the bondage of the lies that Satan has woven to hold people in controlling cult groups like Polygamy and Mormonism.
God has changed me so much. He broke the power of smoking and drinking in my life. He’s changed my thinking, my focus, my fears are gone and my broken heart and dreams have been replaced with the joy of the Lord and the joy of my salvation. I love going to church now. I serve God in church with a teaching ministry of Sunday School and a home bible study. I had the great privilege of serving Him in an outreach ministry for 10 years telling many about Christ’s love and being blessed with the opportunity to lead many women to saving faith in Jesus Christ. I’ve had the joy of seeing some of my family saved, but I have a big family and there’s so many more who need Christ and His free gift of eternal life.
How my heart hurts for those still lost in the slavery and bondage of false religion. How I want to get into the mind and hearts of those who believe the lie instead of the simple truths of the Bible. How I pray that God would make a way to reach these lost people – lost to the false teachings of Joseph Smith, to these false revelations written in the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price. I am praying and waiting because I believe God is going to make a way to reach these lost souls. I believe this because that’s the kind of God He is - a God of great love for His creation and intense love for lost souls.
Luke 19:10 - “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost.”
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