December 11, 2023

The Vision The Night the Book of Mormon was Received

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Years before the Prophet Brigham Young met Joseph Smith he witnessed a miraculous vision in the sky. Brigham was not alone in seeing this vision but his friend Heber C. Kimball saw the same thing in a different location, along with others. The vision was miraculous, but even more miraculous is its connection to the coming forth of The Book of Mormon. This vision in the sky seen by Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball, happened on the same night that Joseph Smith received The Plates from the Hill Cumorah.

Brigham Young recorded that on the night of the vision he was summoned from sleep by a woman, and told to look at the stars. He saw a kind of vision in the sky. Brigham recorded that saw a literal army coming through a channel of light, so many abreast, and dressed in uniforms, that they later associated with the American Army, with muskets and swords. Brigham recorded that could hear the sounds of their marching. They could almost feel the concern and preparation for a great battle. This marching takes place over more than an hour, and culminates in the west.

They wondered at it, and years later learned the vision took place on the same night Joseph Smith received the Plates from the Hill Cumorah.

Heber described the event this way:

“No man could judge of my feelings when I beheld that army of men, as plainly as ever I saw armies of men in the flesh; it seemed as though every [the very] hair of my head was alive.”

“When the front rank of soldiers reached the western horizon a battle ensued.” The noise of the rush of men, and the clash of the arms was distinct and unmistakable. Heber and his friends looked upon this scene for hours, until it gradually disappeared.

Heber’s wife, somewhat afraid, turned to one of the older men in the group and asked, “Father Young, what does all this mean?”

“Why, it’s one of the signs of the coming of the Son of Man,” he replied in a lively and pleased manner.

The vision in the sky was indeed a sign of the coming of the Son of Man, a miraculous event to behold. The night that Heber and his friends in Mendon, New York saw the vision and Brigham Young and friends saw it in Port Byron, New York was September 22, 1827—the same night that the angel Moroni delivered the plates of the Book of Mormon into the hands of the prophet Joseph Smith.

Jewish New Year

On September 22, 1827 this vision was seen in multiple location throughout New York and it also Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year. It is interesting to connect that the beginning of a new dispensation started on the night of the Jewish New Year.

References:

"Prophets of the Restoration" By Truman G. Madsen chapter 2

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