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Question

 

Gramps,

Is there an official church opinion on William Law? If not, what is your opinion? In reading the Expositor, he strikes me of a man of integrity. Some of his ideals were a little out there, but I couldn’t find anything factually inaccurate. He seemed to be legitimately upset by the path of church leadership. Interestingly, I think he would fit in well with the church today.  Thanks.

Albert

 

Answer

 

Albert,

There isn’t any official “church [statement]” regarding William Law except that we know he apostatized and forfeited eternal blessings as a result of his disobedience.

Other results of his disobedience, his dissension, ignited other anti-Mormon movements leading to much persecution of the saints as well as indirectly causing the martyrdom of Joseph Smith. In time, during his dissension, we have record of these statements spoken at these meetings,

“By spring, William Law was holding secret meetings with others on how to kill the Prophet, meetings that were reported to Joseph Smith by two loyal boys attending three meetings, Dennison L. Harris and Robert Scott. On 18 April 1844, Law and a number of other conspirators were excommunicated. The next month, the group of excommunicates appointed Law to succeed Joseph Smith, the “fallen prophet.” They canvassed Nauvoo for new members, but the group disintegrated soon after the death of Joseph Smith.”

In relation to his integrity, or being a man of integrity, I personally wouldn’t consider a man who entered into secret combinations with others to kill a person as a “man of integrity.” In light of the history I have read, I would more say William Law would fit in with any other member of the Church who apostatized and created his own church. I think the Nephite prophets would have defined him as a follower of Nehor and his philosophies.

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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