I have many times been pondering upon a subject, and seemed to come to a stand-still, not knowing how to gain farther information, relating to it, when upon going to meeting on the sabbath, the key would be touched by Joseph and the subject would be so plain I wondered why I had not seen it before.
I was in this situation in relation to the Ten lost tribes of Israel. I had read everything I could find relating to them. I had carefully studied the statistics of the Jews, and not withstanding they had been persecuted for hundreds of years, being murdered and driven, until they were now scattered all over the known world, yet they numbered several millions. I reasoned thus, had the `Ten Tribes’, suffered equal disaster, and they had increased in number, in the same ratio as the Jews, the would number nearly ten times as many–or nine times and a half as it is nine a half tribes instead of ten. If they have increased in this proportion, where is there habitable earth for this vast amount of people who are hidden from the rest of mankind? I could not see.
I was in this train of thought, unable to obtain further information from any source, when as usual on a Sunday morning, I took my skiff and crossed the river to Nauvoo, to attend meeting.
Joseph addressed the congregation, and as if for special benefit, touched upon this subject which opened a new field for reflection to me. His subject was: The “restitution of all things spoken of by all the Holy Prophets since the world began,” quoting the twenty first verse of the third chapter of the Acts of the Apostles.
In the course of his remarks he spoke of the earth being divided at various times. He said, “When Enoch and his city was taken away, a portion of earth was taken and would again be restored. Also in the days of Peleg, the earth was divided, see Genesis 10th Chapter 25 verse.” He then referred to the `Ten Tribes’, saying, “You know a long time ago in the days of Shalmanezer King of Assyria when the Ten Tribes was taken away, and never been heard of since.” He said, “The earth will be restored as at the beginning, and the last taken away will be the first to return, for the last shall be first, and the first shall be last in all things.” He illustrated the return by saying.
“Some of you brethren have been coming up the river on a steamboat, and while seated at the table, the steamboat run against a snag which upset the table and scatter the dishes; so it will be when these portions of earth return. It will make the earth reel to and for `like a drunken man,'” quoting 24th chapter Isaiah 20th verse. When speaking of the return of the Ten Tribes, he said, “The mountains of ice shall flow down at their presence,” and a highway shall be cast up in the midst of the great deep.”
These remarks satisfied me, it was no longer necessary to hunt the place on this earth where the Ten Tribes were so long hidden, for the earth was divided and taken away, and will be the first to return, as it was the last taken away.
“He shall command the great deep, and it shall be driven back into the north countries, and the islands shall become one land.”
“And the land of Jerusalem and the land of Zion shall be turned back into their own place, and the earth shall be like as it was in the days before it was divided. See [D&C 133:21-24] Appendix. Doctrine & Covenants.
I will introduce a poem upon this subject, by Sister E. R. Snow, as it was published in the Millennial Star 1851, pg. 272 entitled
An Address to the Earth
Thou, earth, wast once a glorious sphere of noble magnitude,
And didst with majesty appear, among the worlds of God.
But thy dimensions have been torn asunder, piece by piece,
And each dismembered fragment borne abroad to distant space.
When Enoch could no longer stay amid corruption here,
Part of thyself was borne away to form another sphere.
That portion where his city stood He gained by right approved;
And nearer to the throne of God His planet upward moved.
And when the Lord saw fit to hide the “ten lost tribes” away,
Thou, earth, was severed to provide the orb on which they stay.
And thus, from time to time thy size has been diminished, till
Thou seemest the law of sacrifice created to fulfil.
The curse of God on man was placed: that curse thou didst partake,
And thou hast been by turns disgraced and honored for his sake.
The vilest wretches hell will claim now breathe thy atmosphere,
The noblest spirits heaven can name have been embodied here.
Jesus the Lord thy surface graced; He fell a sacrifice;
And now within thy cold embrace the martyred Joseph lies.
When Satan’s hosts are overcome, the martyred princely rare,
Will claim thee their celestial home thy royal dwelling place.
A “restitution” yet must come, that will to them restore,
By the grand law of worlds, thy sum of matter heretofore.
And thou, O earth, will leave the track thou hast been doomed to trace
The Gods with shouts will bring thee back to fill thy native place.
Upon another occasion about this time, when addressing the Saints upon the coming of the Savior, Joseph said, “I prophecy that the signs of the coming of the Son of Man has already commenced, one pestilence will desolate after another, you hear of wars in foreign lands, but behold I say unto you they are nigh even at your doors, and not many years hence you shall hear of wars in your own land.” I testify of these things and that the coming of the Son of Man is nigh even at your doors. The sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall be turned into blood. If our souls and our bodies are not looking forth for the coming of the Son of Man, and after we are dead, if we are not looking forth for his coming; we shall be among them that call for the rocks to fall on us and hide us.”
“The time is coming when no man will have any peace, but in Zion, and her stakes. I know it I have seen it in vision! I saw men hunting lives of their own sons, and women killing their own daughters, and daughters seeking the lives of their mothers, and brother murdering brother. I saw armies arrayed against armies, I saw blood, desolation, fires–These things are at our doors!”
“They will follow the Saints of God from city to city, Satan will rage, and the spirit of the devil is now enraged. I know not how soon these things will take place and with a view of them, shall I cry peace, peace? No! I will lift up my voice and testify of them. How long you will have good crops, and the famine be kept off, I do not know.”
“The Son of Man has said, that the mother shall be against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother, etc,, and when the fig tree puts forth her leaves, know then that summer is nigh.” Many times he spoke of these things.
(Autobiography of Wandle Mace, Chapter 7; Autobiography (1809-1846); Journal of Wandle Mace, typescript, HBLL