“That part of the work of the Holy spirit in the salvation of men, which consists in giving them vision, forms one of the most important parts (of the Spirit’s work) in the salvation of men, and it is one that was always performed by the Spirit, as far as we have any account of the people of God in his revelations. There is no society of which we have an account in the revelations of God, that he acknowledged as his own, except they had visions among them, and that as long as they continued to walk according to the directions of the Holy Spirit: indeed it was essential to their character as saints; it would be a marvelous thing to find a body of saints on earth and yet there would be no visions among them; we will venture to assert that such a thing was never seen since the world began. We readily admit that a corrupt religion can exist, and false prophecies exist, and sectarian dogmas abound; men-made worshipers increase, and the world abound in a religion that the Lord was not the author of, and yet no visions be among them; but wherever the truth of heaven abounds, there will visions abound also; for it is a part of heaven’s scheme to save men, and without it, we are not authorized to say there is salvation; for all the people who were saved of whom we have an account, were of the number who saw visions; and such was the importance which the sacred writers attached to the seeing of visions, that Solomon says, in Proverbs, chap. 29: ver. 18, that where no vision is, the people perish. But in direct opposition to this, the people of this generation say, that where no vision is, there truth reigns and prevails; and where vision is there error and delusion abounds; but whether we should believe God or man, judge ye.”
Sidney Rigdon, First Counselor in First Presidency, Messenger and Advocate, vol. 1, no. 9, June 1835.