The Prophesied Coming of Christ

 

Various Prophets in both the Bible and the Book of Mormon have spoken of the coming of the Son of God to a young maid in Bethlehem in the meridian of time. Yet many also spoke of His coming a second time at the end of the world after a period of cleansing designed to cleanse the world of the wicked. That time draws nigh. Are we prepared to meet Him? Are our hearts cleansed of hateful and hurtful thoughts or memories that are keeping us from true happiness? Both the Bible and the Book of Mormon are filled with stories of people, and even whole nations, who let their pride and anger turn their hearts cold, with the consequence being the loss of family, home, or nation. Christ’s mission was to cleanse man of their sins through His infinite atonement, thereby setting them free of past mistakes. The only requirement is repentance, a sometimes painful experience as one humbles themselves before God and asks for His forgiveness, but oh so worth it!!

Hard times are coming as the winding up scenes of the world swirl all around us enticing us to forsake good in favor of worldly pleasures. Yet the future is simply a replay of the past, with the sacred books of scriptures providing perfect examples of how various people have rejected their sinful ways and returned to their loving Heavenly Father and avoided the calamities that fell upon the wicked of their generation. It also provides evidence of those who did not and thus fell along with their entire nation, such as Israel who fell to the Babylonians and Assyrians, and also the Nephites of the Book of Mormon living in America who fell to their enemies.  What will become of our generation? Will be too fall with the wicked, or have we purified our hearts and prepared ourselves both temporally and spiritually to assure ourselves divine protection when hard times destined to cleanse the world of the wicked fall upon the nations? Hopefully, the answer is Yes! For America has a divine destiny before her which the Lord will help to preserve for the righteous who merit a place in that Zion yet to come.

America’s Divine Destiny

Two important statues stand tall over America today. Along with the Angel Moroni, which stands majestically atop the Hill Cumorah in New York State in memory of the ancient Nephite civilization, Lady Liberty stands in New York harbor holding a beacon of light as high as she can reach to guide those searching for freedom and liberty to this promised land of America, a land destined for great and marvelous things.

Ezra Taft Benson said: “Here is our nation”s destiny! To serve God’s eternal purposes and to prepare this land and people for America’s eventual destiny, . . ”  (This Nation Shall Endure, p. 13.)

The Book of Mormon makes it clear that America was founded as a Christian nation, a land of liberty, and  that it would be fortified against all other nations as long as its inhabitants served Jesus Christ. However it also teaches us that if we stray from the Lord, the land would cease to be a land of liberty, and His anger would be kindled against us. (See Ether 2:7-12.)

Over and over again the Lord reminded the Nephites and Jaredites that those who inhabit the promised land must remain true to Him and live in the land righteously so that the great Gentile Nation of the latter-days would be able to fulfill its mission in preparing the way for the restoration of all things in anticipation of the Savior’s Second Advent.

In the sad hours and years that followed the horrific battle at Cumorah, Moroni recorded not only the epilogue to his own people, but the fate that befell the Jaredites as well. In so doing he was quick to remind us that their destruction came about because they had forsaken the Lord, and had all turned to wickedness. (See Ether 13:2-3.)

The prophecies pertinent to this holy land of America were not just directed to the ancient people of the Book of Mormon, but to those of our day as well, that we, too, might know of our responsibility to worship the god of the land, which is Jesus Christ, and to keep the land free from sin. Anti-Christs are once again entering our lands today and their numbers are growing, both from within and without.Thus, our missionary force must also grow to counter their proselyting endeavors to teach of Christ and his mission to the sons and daughters and children of the world, that they may be prepared to Greet the Lord when He returns a second time at the end of the terrible days of tribulation destined to come upon the world because of man’s sinful behavior. And also to prepare them to enjoy a thousand years of Millennial peace.

Read more of America’s Divine Destiny and the perils that await her in the new book, The Prophesied Coming of the Lord-June 2017.

 

The Covenant Children of the Lord

The saga played out in the Book of Mormon is simply a continuation of the saga played out in the Bible. Shem, one of the three sons of Noah, was given the Patriarchal birthright which was passed down through the ages to Abraham, the grandfather of Jacob whose twelve sons became the twelve Israel. While the bulk of Jacob’s  posterity  remained in the old world, Joseph’s line broke away from the other tribes and was led by the hand of the Lord to America where they founded a new nation.  In 3rd Nephi, the Lord acknowledges the Nephites as a branch of his covenant people. During his visit to America after his death and resurrection, the Lord said: “Ye are the children of the prophets; and ye are of the house of Israel; and ye are of the covenant which the Father made with your fathers” (3 Nephi 20:25).

We learn through modern revelation that it was in America that Adam lived out his days near Adam-Ondi Ahman in Missouri. It was in America that the city of Enoch was built, and where Noah built the great Ark that saved his family from the great Deluge.

Ezra Taft Benson said:

Many great events have transpired in this land of destiny. This was the place where Adam dwelt; this was the place where the Garden of Eden was; it was here that Adam met with a body of high priests at Adam-ondi-Ahman shortly before his death and gave them his final blessings, and the place to which he will go to meet the leaders of his people (D&C 107:53-57).

He added: Here is our nation’s destiny! To serve God’s eternal purposes and to prepare this land and people for America’s eventual destiny,

Destruction Awaits the Wicked

 The Lord has made it abundantly clear that the only thing that will bring down America will be the iniquity of its people. Many of the great civilizations of antiquity have been condemned by the Lord for their wickedness such Babylon, Nineveh, Sodom and Gomorrah, and others. The great Roman Empire and Greece fell, as did the great Jaredite civilization in America, and later the Nephites, each after having developed into great centers of wealth and prosperity and then falling into wicked ways. What will become our nation if we continue as we are?

As far back as 1812, long before the Book of Mormon came out, New York Governor DeWitt Clinton gave a lecture before the Historical Society of New York detailing the aboriginal monuments found in the state which testify of the great destruction that took place at some remote time in in history.  He said:

  Why have we no history of such a nation as must have inhabited this part of the world? probably if a knowledge of those ancient people is ever obtained, it will be derived from inscriptions on stones or metals, which may have withstood the rust of time.  88-McGavin & Bean, The Geography of the Book of Mormon, p.90.

How many missionaries would love to stand today and shout from the rooftops that their identity is not lost, nor is their history, a history preserved by holy prophets for the knowledge and benefit of those of our day, that we might know of Christ’s visit to this part of the world, and that we learn from the lessons of the past and not make the same mistakes that would unavoidably lead to our own destruction as well.

 

General Douglas MacArthur’s Warning to America

General Douglas MacArthur once spoke of his concerns about the need to keep our country’s moral integrity intact, including our dependence on God. Prayer, both individual and family, is more essential to our survival as a nation than ever before. MacArthur said, in A Soldier Speaks, on December 12, 1951:

       In this day of gathering storms, as the moral deterioration of political power spreads its growing infection, it is essential that every spiritual force be mobilized to defend and preserve the religious base upon which this nation was founded. For it is that base which has been the motivating impulse to our moral and national growth. History fails to record a single precedent in which nations subject to moral decay have not passed into political and economic decline. There has been either a spiritual reawakening to overcome the moral lapse, or a progressive deterioration leading to ultimate national disaster.” 1

He finishes by saying: “The hour is late, the time is short. We must begin now, in earnest, and invite God’s blessings on our efforts.”

It is sad to note that both the Nephites and Jaredites of the Book of Mormon learned just how serious the Lord was about keeping the promised land clean and firmly rooted in its Christian foundation, both nations having been totally destroyed. Both learned the hard way that as people grow they follow one of two paths, either upwards toward God, or down to destruction. Ezra Taft Benson noted that history itself proves nations progress “from bondage to spiritual faith; from spiritual faith to courage; from courage to freedom; from freedom to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to complacency; from complacency to apathy; from apathy to fear; from fear to dependency; from dependency to bondage. 2 We might ask ourselves, where on this scale do we as a nation stand today?

Our own history books are filled with instances of success by those who had God on their side. For example, those who fought to preserve our freedom to worship Almighty God as our hearts so dictated, such as the men who fought during the revolutionary war, were spared and ultimately went on to build a nation that prospered beyond all other nations on earth, while the last generations of the Nephites and Jaredites, who fought only for worldly gain, power, and possessions, lost their final battles, and were consigned to the arms of Mother Earth to await a day of reconciliation. Thus, a constant study of the rise and fall of the Nephites and Jaredites can be a powerful tool in learning from the past the course we should take today. Once we become familiar enough with the characters in the Book of Mormon to feel the pains of those who lost everything, and recognize their folly in rejecting God, we will be more inclined to avoid the same mistakes, and take every measure needed to stay the hand of the devil whose dark minions are moving all too quickly across this land.

If only a movie could be made of the journey of the golden plates, we would be amazed by the struggle it took for the various prophets and scribes to keep them out of the hands of the Lamanites and those who wished to destroy them. They hid them in caves and in hillsides and were careful to allow only those they felt confident were guided by the Spirit to ever come in contact with them. The scriptures tell us they were polished and kept bright through each generation so that those of our day could see the workings of God among men and learn from the mistakes of those who turned away from him and were ultimately destroyed. Let us continue to make study of the scriptures a daily ritual, lest we too forget.

Learn more about our Nations destiny in The Prophesied Coming of Christ-June-2017

1- General Douglas MacCarthy,  A Soldier Speaks, on December 12, 1951, found in Ezra Taft Benson=s An Enemy Hath Done This, p.13.

 

2- Ezra Taft Benson, An Enemy Hath Done This, p 117

God is at the Helm

There can be little doubt that the winding up scene of this earths temporal existence is happening before our very eyes, with many around us crying doom and gloom so loudly that awe can scarcely keep from slipping into a deep depression. Despair seems to fill fill our thoughts continually and we sometimes lose hope of any future happiness. Yet, we are watching our once great nation crumble under the weight of lawlessness. Neighborhoods which were once safe havens for our people have turned into crime ridden ghettos. Children who used to play in playgrounds now gather in gangs and revel in destructive behavior. The innocence of entertainment has become eroded to the point where it is a breeding ground for evil delights of every kind.  Music which once flowed gently through our homes, now jangles our nerves and offers lyrics not suitable to even listen to. Politicians serve their own needs instead of that of the nation, and the news media is so quick to twist the events of the day for ratings that we don’t know who we can trust anymore. Unfortunately, the wickedness of a people brings with it the withdrawal of the Spirit of the Lord leaving Lucifer free to rule the land.

Sadly, we are seeing only the beginning of the woes yet to come. Prophecy tells us that wickedness will worsen until the world is ripe for destruction. Yet it will be the wicked, not the righteous who are doomed.  Whatever means the Lord choses to destroy the ungodly, we must trust that that the righteous will be spared.  Thus, we must not fear or wallow in despair. Yet that is a difficult thing to ask of us. How can we not fear when we look at the countries of the world that are crumbing all around us and millions of people are either being slaughtered or driven from their homes with little more than the clothes on their backs. How can we not fear when we know from past experience that when a nation becomes as wicked as ours has, the Spirit of God withdraws. We can feel it, and we can see the fruits of that withdrawal as men’s hearts are harden all around us, and evil seems to be winning. Millions of babies are being slaughtered through abortion world-wide, drugs have enslaved millions more, and bigotry and racism is rampant. The news media is so eager for rating that they stop at nothing to bring us every piece of dirt or horror they can find to greet us every morning when we first wake up, and then on and on until we fall into a fretful sleep at night.

But we must pause here for a moment and remember that God is at the helm and is winning in this fight for the souls of men, not Lucifer. While the battle between good an devil continues to escalate, we must remember that this is God’s war, not ours, and His strategies are not always ours to understand. When the time comes that disasters strike, or evil presents itself at our doors, pray for guidance and strength and legions of heavenly hosts will be there to preserve your righteous families. Trust in His arm; trust in His promise that the righteous need not fear if they are prepared physically, spiritually, and temporally and let God direct His work in His own way, and in His own good time.

Today, God’s army of Latter-day missionaries are scouring the earth in search of the righteous and pure in heart. Their task is to go into all the world and gather in the lost sheep of Israel and plant them in the pastures of Zion. Then, and only then will God reap the whirlwind and destroy the wicked from off the face of the earth. God is at the helm, make no mistake about it, and if we stand in holy places in the stakes of Zion, we should not fear.

Be Ye Therefore Prepared

Few can deny that evil powers are increasing in the United States that seek to control others by depriving them of their rights. Our Constitution is being shredded piece by piece, and our banking system is being effectively controlled by international bankers whose interest are not our own. Secret combinations are raging throughout the land just as they did during Book of Mormon times.  Nowhere else is this message given more poignantly than in the Book of Mormon where we find the righteous Nephites fighting valiantly to keep their freedom against those who wanted a king, a state of affairs that would have cost them dearly? Reading the Book of Mormon over and over again will bring such important messages to the forefront of our minds and keep us from making the same mistakes in our day—if only we will listen, for God has lost His patience. He said:

How oft have I called upon you by the mouth of my servants, and by the ministering of angels, and by mine own voice, and by the voice of thunderings, and by the voice of lightnings, and by the voice of tempests, and by the voice of earthquakes, and great hailstorms, and by the voice of famines and pestilences of every kind, and by the great sound of a trump, and by the voice of judgment, and by the voice of mercy all the day long, and by the voice of glory and honor and the riches of eternal life, and would have saved you with an everlasting salvation, but ye would not!

Behold, the day has come, when the cup of the wrath of mine indignation is full (D&C  43:25-26).

Numerous scriptural references maintain that the Lord has simply had enough of the wickedness of man. Thus major disasters in the form of famine, plagues, and warfare are destined to cleanse the earth of its wicked inhabitants prior to His Second Coming.

 Be Ye Therefore Prepared

The First Presidency letter of 1988 urged the Saints to be prepared with enough basics to weather any emergency. It read:

We continue to encourage members to store sufficient food, clothing, and where possible fuel for at least one year. We have not laid out an exact formula for what should be stored. However, we suggest that members concentrate on essential foods that sustain life, such as grains, legumes, cooking oil, powdered milk, salt, sugar or honey, and water. Most families can achieve and maintain this basic level of preparedness. The decision to do more than rest this rests with the individual.  We encourage you to follow this counsel with the assurance that a people prepared through obedience to the commandments of God need not fear.

Listen to what our latter-day Prophets have said about being prepared in the following video.

2- Reprinted in October 1988 Ensign.

Enduring to the End

One of the greatest challenges of man is to endure to the end. The expectations of the Millennium or of celestial glories will have no meaning if we fall short of the mark and succumb to the forces of evil. If at the close of our mortal probation we have allowed Satan to claim the victory and steal away our hearts we will lose the reward of the faithful, for only those who serve God and endure to the end will continue on to exaltation. This in no way means that we must be perfect in this life for so few attain that state during mortality, but we must remain steadfast and submissive and bow to the will of the Father in all things if we are to counted worthy of so great a blessing.

     And again, be patient in tribulation until I come; and, behold I come quickly, and my reward is with me, and they who have sought me early shall find rest to their souls.  Even so Amen. (D&C 54:10.)

God has been good to us!  He has blessed us beyond measure and has given us a beautiful world to enjoy. He has placed music at our fingertips and created voices and melodies to fill the air. He has placed us in circumstances that best suit our needs, and governs the affairs of our growth and schooling personally. He lends an ear when trials appear and often softens a hurt, opens a door, or soothes a brow when no one else on earth can do it. He is there at our invitation through prayer, and his understanding of our needs is unquestioned. He created a mind that can seek the wonders of the universe, an eye that can see roses and a hand that can rock the cradle of love. Attributes that, if directed wisely, can bring untold happiness and joy. Thus, blessings rain steadily upon the righteous and we ere in our inclination to lash out and deny his goodness. Therefore, we must be patient in our afflictions and continue onward and upward toward that light which leads to Life Eternal.

This sojourn in mortality is but a moment in the expanse of eternity. The time is so very short and there is so much to learn to become worthy candidates for celestial living. All people everywhere earn their rewards by the use of their agency, and by struggling with the forces of good and evil. God in his wisdom has ordained that we learn obedience by experience and suffering. Thus, we cannot know the good without the bad. Nor can we learn of joy without experiencing the awful depths of sorrow. We simply cannot become perfect without purifying ourselves through every trial and every ordeal that God has outlined for our benefit.

As we struggle through mortality and search the heavens for further light and knowledge concerning our mortal schooling, the path becomes clear. Through diligence and study we soon learn that the tests and trials, the tempering and refinement, the stretching and growing, are all for one purpose – to perfect us to the degree that we might enjoy the blessings of eternity a message all are encouraged to share with their neighbors and friends until the light of the gospel has spread through every land and city of the world.

The Millennium

The Sabbath of time will be the grandest of all the millenniums and man will produce more good works, more enlightened thought, more beautiful edifices, grand cities, magnificent artworks and splendid music than we ever dreamed possible. Nothing our minds can imagine will compare with the beauty and glory that await the faithful during the great Day of the Lord.

As the divine Spirit rains down upon the land and its inhabitant, knowledge will begin to flood the earth, including those mysteries that were hidden from the foundation of the world. Things both past, present and future, will be made known to the millennial man and woman and there will be nothing that will be withheld from their eyes. The knowledge of the world and of the entire universe will be laid out before them in all their splendor.

The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. Wherefore, the things of all nations shall be made known; yea, all things shall be made known unto the children of men. There is nothing which is secret save it shall be revealed; there is no work of darkness save it shall be made manifest in the light; and there is nothing which is sealed upon the earth save it shall be loosed. Therefore, all things which have been revealed unto the children of men shall at that day be revealed. (2 Nephi 30:15-18.)

The Millennium will not be a time of leisure or idleness, for there will be much work to do. There will be farming and merchandising. Homes and cities must be built, temples erected and temple work attended to. Fortunately, man will not weary of his work and responsibilities as the quickened man will no longer know the aches and pains of mortality, or succumb to illness or disease. He will not be crippled or become depressed or mentally anguished, nor will he will suffer the debilitating effects of old age. What wonderful things we could accomplish in this life if the handicaps of the flesh did not fetter us or keep us down. Nonetheless, this life is a time and place for learning and of being tested and tried.

All of our experiences, whether good or bad, are for our ultimate benefit. Those so blessed to be born during the Millennium will not have to pass through the portals of pain and despair, but regardless, they too must work out their salvation. They must grow step by step – gaining knowledge precept upon precept just as mortal man did and must use their agency to do good works and must labor for their support and for that of their families. They must search for and find mates, marry and raise up righteous children to the Lord. They must worship and pray and search the scriptures for the meaning of life. They must learn to draw upon the powers of heaven and seek revelation from on high. They must help in the work of salvation for their kindred dead and must help in the work of reconciliation for the entire human family, for all things must be in order. Families must be sealed, partners married, ordinances recorded in such a way that they coincide with the records of heaven. A great work must be done, a work that will take a millennium to complete and the millennial family must be the means of its completion.

Those who live during the Sabbath of time will not be idle or pampered or living lives of perpetual luxury but will be united in love and purpose. They will work together to complete the work of sealing the entire human family together so that the Son can present the finished work to his Father when the time allotted is finished.  There will be more work to do during the millennium than in all past dispensations combined. It will be a time of temple work, genealogy work and of the reconciling of all things.

With the earth restored to its paradisiacal glory, the Savior, along with numerous resurrected Saints, such as Adam, Enoch, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Lehi, Nephi, Mormon and Moroni  and countless others who were with Him at His Coming will descend with Him to usher in the Millennium. How wonderful it will be to mingle with the righteous Saints from all dispensations of time—those who remained faithful to their covenants and thus merited a place in the Kingdom of God.