The Oath of Vengeance

Following Joseph Smith's martyrdom, Brigham Young introduced an oath in the endowment which required members to swear vengeance "upon this nation." It became the subject of a United States Senate Investigation.

Reed Smoot was a Mormon Apostle who had been elected a Senator from Utah. In 1903 a protest was filed in the United States Senate to have Hon. Smoot removed from office, on the grounds that he had taken this treasonous oath in the endowment ritual. The complete record of this episode was published in:

U.S. Senate Document 486 (59th Congress, 1st Session) Proceedings Before the Committee on Privileges and Elections of the United States Senate in the Matter of the Protests Against the Right of Hon. Reed Smoot, a Senator from the State of Utah, to hold his Seat. 4 vols.[+1 vol. index] (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1906)

Several former Mormons revealed the content of this oath. The wording was as follows:

"You and each of you do covenant and promise that you will pray and never cease to pray to Almighty God to avenge the blood of the prophets upon this nation, and that you will teach the same to your children and to your children's children unto the third and fourth generation."

The oath remained a part of the temple rituals until February 15, 1927.

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