Joseph's First Vision account to Robert Matthais or "Joshua the Jewish Minister"

"Being wrought up in my  mind, respecting the subject of religion and looking at; the different systems taught the children of men, I knew not who was right or who was wrong and concidering it of the first importance that  I should be right, in matters that involve eternal consequences; being thus perplexed in mind  I retired to the silent grove and bowd down before  the Lord, under a realising sense that he had said  (if the bible be true) ask and you shall receive  knock and it shall be opened seek and you shall  find and again, if any man lack wisdom let  him ask of God who giveth to all men libar ally and upbradeth not;information was what  I most desired at this time, and with a fixed  determination to obtain it, I called upon the Lord  for the first time, in the place above stated or in  other words I made a fruitless attempt to pray, my  toung seemed to be swolen in my mouth, so that  I could not utter, I heard a noise behind me  like some person walking towards me, <I> strove again  to pray, but could not, the noise of walking seem ed to draw nearer, I sprung up on my feet,and looked around, but saw no person or thing  that was calculated to produce the noise of wal king, I kneeled again my mouth was opened and  my toung liberated, and I called on the Lord in  mighty prayer, a pillar of fire appeared above  my head, it presently rested down upon me, and filled me with joy unspeakable, a  personage appeard in the midst, of this pillar  of flame which was spread all around, and yet  nothing consumed, another personage soon appeard like unto the first, he said unto me thy sins are  forgiven thee, he testifyed unto me that Jesus Christ  is the son of God; <and I saw many angels in this vision> I was about 14. years old  when I received this first communication." (Joseph Smith Papers, Journal, 1835–1836)

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