Doctrine and Covenants 41 to 44- “My Law to Govern My Church”

Doctrine and Covenants sections 41 to 44 include commandments, callings, and prophecy. The Saints learned the covenant of consecration, even though the law of consecration was not fully implemented in Kirtland.

“Edward Partridge in Painesville, Ohio,” Scott H. Partridge, BYU Studies, Vol. 42, no. 1
In 1830, Edward Partridge owned a hat-making factory and a retail store and a substantial house, and he had a wife and family to whom he was dedicated. This article looks in detail at Partridge’s background, his initial disbelief of the restored gospel, his mission, and his role as bishop. The law of consecration was not presented to the members of the Church as some kind of investment scheme in which they could participate or not participate as they chose. This temporal commitment was considered as sacred and binding as any of the religious rites of the Church.

“An Introduction to the Kirtland Flats Ashery,” Benjamin C. Pykles, BYU Studies, Vol. 41, no. 1
Newel K. Whitney built an ashery in Kirtland in the 1820s that came to play an important role in the Saints’ efforts to build the kingdom of God. This article describes how an ashery operated and how Whitney was likely involved in the potash industry. In April 1832, in an attempt to alleviate the temporal responsibilities of Edward Partridge and Whitney, a “Central Council” of five (later seven) men was created to supervise the business affairs of the Church in both Missouri and Ohio. Bishop Whitney was one of those chosen to comprise this council. Immediately, the Central Council established what was called the United Firm. This was “a joint-stewardship of the members of the council with the responsibility of holding properties in trust, assisting the poor, and supervising the establishment of merchandising stores in Ohio and Missouri.” Because of the potential of Bishop Whitney’s ashery to help fulfill these objectives, the council adopted the business as one of the properties to be owned in trust.

“Building the Kirtland Stake of Zion,” Church History, Church website

Photos of the reconstructed ashery and sawmill and brief descriptions of the Saints’ mission to build a city, a stake, and a temple.

“Consecration: Law of Consecration,” Frank W. Hirschi, Encyclopedia of Mormonism
The key principles given in the revelations are consistent with those required for celestial living: all things belong to God, and his people are stewards; individuals are to esteem others as themselves; mankind must retain free agency; men and women are made equal according to their wants, needs, and family situations; and there must be accountability. A secondary article discusses consecration in Ohio and Missouri; the law of consecration was never fully practiced in Ohio but was implemented in Missouri in various forms between 1831 and 1839.

“Historical Context and Background,” by Steven C. Harper, at Doctrine and Covenants Central

Find here brief histories of the settings of D&C sections 41, 42, 43, and 44. These histories show the momentous events of early 1831 in Kirtland.

Saints Podcast: 12, Ye Shall Receive My Law, discussion led by Ben Godfrey and Jenny Reeder

The participants discuss the Church in 1831: Joseph Smith teaches the proper use of spiritual gifts. Lucy Mack Smith uses her faith to lead eighty Saints from New York to Ohio.