Youth of a Noble Birthright
We have heard much in the world community about so-called master races . The feeling of superiority in the minds of the leaders of these self-acclaimed superior groups who have campaigned for world domination has plunged the world into mighty and terrible world conflicts. The mystery of their fancied superiority has now been very largely exploded by the force of arms of the opposing nations they sought to conquer. The arrogance assumed by these master races, so called, has engendered the most bitter race prejudice in the world’s history. There are other forces sweeping this and other countries that would break down all social barriers as betwen races and that would nullify existing laws prohibiting legal marriage between certain races. There are still others who place apparently erroneous interpretations on the declaration to be found in the opening paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence to the effect that “All men are created equal.” It is well that you as the youth of our land have from the fountain of unfailing truth, the Church of Jesus Christ, the truths of the scriptures concerning these important problems that involve the relationship of human beings to each other and to God, our Heavenly Father.
Father of All Spirits
How many races are there? Most scientists have divided humanity into five groups: The white, the black, the brown, the yellow and the red races. Others have grouped the brown, yellow and red races as “subgroups” of a single race.
There is no truth more plainly taught in the Gospel than that our condition in the next world will depend upon the kind of lives we live here. “All that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done evil, onto the resurrection of damnation.” (John 5:28-29) Is it not just as reasonable to suppose that the conditions in which we now live have been determined by the kind of lives we live in the pre-existent world of spirits?
That the apostles understood this principle is indicated by their questions to the Master when the man who was blind from his birth was healed of his blindness, “Master, who did sin, this man or his parents that he was born blind?” (John 9:2) Now perhaps you will have a partial answer to some of your questions as to why, if God is a just Father, that some of his children are born of an enlightened race and in a time when the Gospel is upon the earth, while others are born of heathen parentage in a benighted, backward country; and still others are born to parents who have the mark of a black skin with which the seed of Cain were cursed and whose descendants were to be denied the rights of the priesthood of God.
A Priceless Privilege
The privilege of obtaining a mortal body on this earth is seemingly so priceless that those in the spirit world, even though unfaithful or not valiant, were undoubtedly permitted to take mortal bodies although under penalty of racial or physical or nationalistic limitations. Between the extremes of the “noble and the great” spirits, whom God would make his rulers, and the disobedient and the rebellious, who were cast out with Satan, there were obviously many spirits with varying degrees of faithfulness. May we not assume from these teachings that the progress and development we made as spirits have brought privileges and blessings here according to the faithfulness in the spirit world? Now don’t be too hasty in your conclusions as to what conditions in mortality constitute the greater privileges. That condition in life which gives the greatest experience and opportunity for development is the one to be most desired and anyone so privileged is most favored of God. It has been said that “a smooth sea never made a skillful mariner, neither do uninterrupted prosperity and success qualify for usefulness and happiness. The storms of adversity, like those of the ocean, rouse the faculties and excite the invention, prudence, skill and fortitude of the voyager. The mariners of ancient times, in bracing their minds to outward calamities, acquired a loftiness of purpose and a moral heroism worth a lifetime of softness and security.”
All Are Equal
All are equal in that they are the spirit children of God, and also equal in their right to free agency, as well as in the fact that all are made innocent of previous wrongs committed as they enter this world through the atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Lord has told us that “every spirit of man was innocent in the beginning; and God having redeemed man from the fall, men became again, in their infant state, innocent before God”. (D&C 93:38) Who knows but that many of those with seeming inequalities in this life, if they do everything possible with their limited opportunities, may not receive greater blessings than some of those rewarded by having been born to a noble lineage and to superior social and spiritual opportunities who failed to live up to their great privileges! The history of the Lord’s dealings with his children is filled with incidents that indicate that many of those who are the “elect according to the covenant”, or that are the “chosen” of God to be born through the chosen lineage of the House of Israel or the Lord’s “chosen” in the preexistent world, will fail of their callings because of their sins. The descendants of Jacob or Israel, through his twelve sons, have been scattered to far and wide among the nations as a punishment because of their transgressions, but in this instance the punishment of Israel has been a blessing to the nations who have thereby received the rights belonging to Israel. It was through the lineage of Judah, one of the sons of Jacob, and that the Savior was born. Most of the prophets of every dispensation since the days of Israel have been of the chosen lineage of Jacob through his twelve sons, and we are led to believe by the prophets of our own day that the vast majority of those who have received the Gospel are of the tribe of Ephraim. The Indians on the American continents are descendants of the tribes of Ephraim, Judah, and Manasseh, we are told by the Book of Mormon. (Omni 15-19, I Nephi 5:14-16.) Their dark skin was a curse put upon them because of their transgression, which in the day to come in their descendants will be lifted and they will become white and a delightsome as they accept the Gospel and turn to the Lord.
Intermarriage with Other Races
Millions of souls have come into this world with the mark that was put upon Cain’s posterity and have been denied the privileges of the priesthood and the fullness of the blessings of the Gospel. Concerning them one of our leaders has expressed this opinion: “I believe that race is the one through which it is ordained those spirits that were not valiant in the great rebellion in heaven should come; who, through their indifference or lack of integrity to righteousness, rendered themselves unworthy of the priesthood and its powers, and hence it is withheld from them to this day.” (B. H. Roberts – Contributor, 6:297.) The seed of Cain has been separated from the rest of mankind from the beginning, but they are the children of God. They may become Church members without the priesthood, but a promise of hope has been given by a prophet in our day in these words: “The day will come when all that race will be redeemed and possess all the blessings which we now have.” (Quoted from President Brigham Young in Wilford Woodruff, p. 351.)
We should manifest kindness and consideration for these our brothers and sisters who have been born into mortal bodies through the lineage of Cain, no doubt due to some disqualifications resulting from their conduct in the preexistence. Some of this race have become members of the Church and are setting examples of faith and devotion that all of us could well pattern after, despite the limitations of their privileges in the Church.
To impress the grave consequences and the seriousness of intermarriage as between those of different races and particularly with reference to intermarriage with the seed of Cain, President Brigham Young made this remark in an address before the Legislature: “… That mark shall remain upon the seed of Cain until the seed of Abel shall be redeemed, and Cain shall not receive the priesthood until the time of that redemption. Any man having one drop of the seed of Cain in him cannot receive the priesthood…” (Wilford Woodruff, page 351.)
Surely no one of you who is an heir to a body of more favored lineage would knowingly intermarry with the race that would condemn your posterity to penalties that have been placed upon the seed of Cain by the judgments of God.
It might not be amiss likewise to urge upon you the most serious consideration of any question of your possible intermarriage with individuals of any other race than your own. No one of you with safety can defy the laws of heredity and the centuries of training that have developed strong racial characteristics and tendencies among the distinctive peoples of the earth and then expect to find a happy, congenial family relationship from such a union. The wisdom of experience fully demonstrates the importance of your marrying those of your own race and those with a similar background of customs and manners.
(Lee, Harold B. Decisions for Successful Living. Deseret Book Company, 1973, dpp. 1087-1114, emphases added)
The LDS Church currently endorses these teachings by continuously publishing and openly peddling them in one of their for-profit websites, with unabated enthusiasm (emphases added):
Newly revised and enlarged, this important book by one of the prominent leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints now becomes even more valuable as a message for today’s youth — and for adults as well.
For the most part the writings contained herein are based on a series of radio messages delivered in 1945 under the heading “Youth and the Church.”
Though the author talked directly and frankly to the youth about their problems of that day, it is amazing to note that the wisdom of his counsel is so pertinent and applicable to the problems of this present day. This fact attests to the unchanging principles of truth found in the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, which teachings provide the “answers to every question and the solution of every problem essential to the social, temporal, and spiritual welfare of human beings who are all the children of God, our Eternal Father.”
These messages, which were so popular among youth of the day they were first given, are just as vital for the eternal well-being of today’s most promising generation, faced as it is with the never-ending contest between truth and error, righteousness and wickedness.
Says the author: “If by a reading of my humble offerings the reader is induced to a deeper study of the Scriptures wherein may be found the sure guide to eternal happiness through an abiding testimony in the mission of the Lord Jesus Christ, I will have accomplished my purpose.”