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Joseph Smith's Civil War prophecy to be Lee Library lecture topic April 4

The Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University is hosting a House of Learning Lecture, “Have We Not Had a Prophet Among Us? Changing Reception and Use of Joseph Smith’s Civil War Prophecy (D&C 87),” Thursday, April 4, at 2 p.m. in the library auditorium on the first level. 

The lecture is in conjunction with the library’s Civil War exhibit and will be presented by Scott C. Esplin, an associate professor in the BYU Church History Department. Admission is free.

“The Southern States shall be divided against the Northern States," Joseph Smith declared on Christmas day, 1832, nearly three decades before the U.S. Civil War erupted in South Carolina. With the war's commencement, interest in the Prophet's revelation spiked, leading one U.S. newspaper to openly speculate, "Have we not had a prophet among us?"

This lecture will analyze the receiving, recording and publishing of one of the most famous Joseph Smith revelations, Doctrine and Covenants 87, to understand what it says about how the LDS Church interacts with society.

Esplin earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in educational leadership and foundations from BYU, focusing on the history and academies of The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints. He also taught for the Church Educational System for nine years and specializes in the Doctrine and Covenants, 20th century Nauvoo Church history and Church history in Ohio.

For more information, contact Roger Layton, (801) 422-6687, roger_layton@byu.edu.

Writer: Hwa Lee

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