Did Joseph Smith say you would kill yourself to get to the Telestial Kingdom


joseph-smithThis quote is most often attributed to Joseph Smith, but some have attributed it to Brigham Young. The quote usually goes like this: “The Telestial Kingdom is so great that if you were able to see it, you’d kill yourself just to get there.”

There may be some truth to this statement, but the only record we have of it being uttered, unfortunately, is a third-hand account from Charles W. Walker in 1877. He wrote the following in his journal:

And on Friday last while speaking at the Funeral of Matilda Moody [Brother Woodruff] said we should improve the present time and do all we could for our dead ere death called us away. He referred to a saying of Joseph Smith which he heard him utter (like this) That if the People knew what was behind the vail, they would try by every means to commit suicide that they might get there, but the Lord in his wisdom had implanted the fear of death in every person that they might cling to life and thus accomplish the designs of their creator.

So, we have no first-hand account, but we do have a paraphrase from Walker writing in his journal two days after he heard Woodruff recall a statement from Joseph Smith, which would have been spoken at least 33 years ealier.

The veracity of the quote is somewhat questionable, but it is still your call.

Kill yourself to get to Telestial Kingdom

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