• A few decades prior to Christ’s coming

    by  • March 18, 2013 • Jesus Christ, Second Coming of Christ, Temple, War • 0 Comments

    “In the Book of Mormon we find a pattern for preparing for the Second Coming. A major portion of the book centers on the few decades just prior to Christ’s coming to America. By careful study of that time period, we can determine why some were destroyed in the terrible judgments that preceded His coming and what brought others to stand at the temple in the land of Bountiful and thrust their hands into the wounds of His hands and feet.” (Ezra Taft Benson, “The Keystone of Our Religion“, Ensign, Jan. 1992, 2)

    So what happens during those few decades, say 120 years starting with the record of Alma, prior to the coming of Christ to the Nephites and Lamanites?

    In short:

    • Apostasy and War   91-87 BC (Alma 1-3)
    • Missionary work to the people of Nephi   87-81 BC (Alma 4-15)
    • War   81 BC (Alma 16)
    • Missionary work to the Lamanites   91-77 BC (Alma 17-26)
    • War   76 BC (Alma 28)
    • Apostasy   74 BC (Alma 30)
    • Missionary work to the Zoramites   74 BC (Alma 31-35)
    • War   74 BC (Alma 43-44)
    • Apostasy   73 BC (Alma 45-46)
    • Government under attack from within   73 BC (Alma 46)
    • War   72 BC (Alma 48-50)
    • Government under attack from within   67 BC (Alma 51)
    • War   67 BC (Alma 51)
    • War   66-61 BC (Alma 52-62)
    • Political intrigues, government under attack from within   52 BC (Helaman 1)
    • War   52 BC (Helaman 1)
    • Political intrigues, government under attack from within   50 BC (Helaman 2)
    • Apostasy and War   38-31 BC (Helaman 4)
    • Missionary work to the Nephites and Lamanites   30 BC (Helaman 5)
    • Missionary work to the Nephites by the Lamanites   29 BC (Helaman 6)
    • Government under attack from within and taken over   24 BC (Helaman 6)
    • Apostasy and political intrigues   25-20  BC (Helaman 6-9)
    • War   20 BC (Helaman 11)
    • Famine   18-17 BC (Helaman 11)
    • Apostasy   12-7 BC (Helaman 11)
    • Samuel’s prophecy of the great sign in the heavens of the coming of the Son of Man   6 BC (Helaman 13-15)
    • Great signs and wonders, prophecies are fulfilled, angels appear to men   2 BC (Helaman 16)
    • Apostasy   1 BC (Helaman 16)
    • People say the time is past for the signs to be fulfilled   1 AD (3 Nephi 1)
    • The great sign in the heavens of the coming of the Son of Man appears   1 AD (3 Nephi 1)
    • Apostasy   3-9 AD (3 Nephi 2)
    • War   13-22 AD (3 Nephi 2-4)
    • Apostasy   29-30 AD (3 Nephi 6)
    • Government under attack from within and overthrown with the breakdown of centralized government into tribal units   30 AD (3 Nephi 7)
    • Natural disasters of epic proportions   34 AD (3 Nephi 8-10)
    • Gathering at the temple, Zion   34 AD (3 Nephi 11)
    • The coming of the Son of God to His holy temple   34 AD (3 Nephi 11)

    What are some of the take home messages from this time in Nephite history? How does Mormon and Moroni’s history lesson (Morm 8:34-41) apply to us?

    •  There will be wars and rumors of wars (Mormon 8:30), but the end is not yet (JS-Mat 1:23)
    • War will yet sweep through the American continent (3 Nephi 20:15-16, 3 Nephi 21:12-15, Mormon 5:24)
    • Government of freedom and liberty will be under attack, there will be sweeping corruption at the highest levels of power (Ether 8:24)
    • Centralized government may be overthrown
            • Orson Hyde said the Prophet Joseph Smith predicted “the time would come that the Constitution and the country would be in danger of an overthrow and said he, if the constitution be saved at all, it will be by the Elders of this Church. I believe this is about the language as nearly as I can recollect it.” (JD, 6:150.)
    • The gospel shall be preached to all the world, every tongue, people, nation, and kindred (D&C 133:36-37)
    • The testimony of earthquakes, famine, and pestilence will be heard (D&C 88:87-91)
    • We shall be warned (Amos 3:7, Alma 13:21-26, D&C 88:92)
      • There will be a great and grand sign in heaven of the coming of the Son of Man (D&C 88:93) “Judah must return, Jerusalem must be rebuilt, and the temple, and water come out from under the temple, and the waters of the Dead Sea be healed. It will take some time to rebuild the walls of the city and the temple, etc.; and all this must be done before the Son of Man will make His appearance. There will be wars and rumors of wars, signs in the heavens above and on the earth beneath, the sun turned into darkness and the moon to blood, earthquakes in divers places, the seas heaving beyond their bounds; then will appear one grand sign of the Son of Man in heaven. But what will the world do? They will say it is a planet, a comet, etc. But the Son of Man will come as the sign of the coming of the Son of Man, which will be as the light of the morning cometh out of the east” History of the Church, 5:337; from a discourse given by Joseph Smith on Apr. 6, 1843, in Nauvoo, Illinois; reported by Willard Richards. As cited in Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, (2011), pg. 248–60
    • People will say the Lord delays His coming (D&C 45:26)
    • There will be several years between this great sign and the actual coming (Revelations 8:1, D&C 88:95)
    • The saints will gather to Zion (D&C 45:68-71)
    • The Lord will come to His Saints to the holy temple (D&C 133:2)

    I hope to see you in line, waiting to place our hands in the wounds in His side, His hands, and His feet.

    Feel free to add below your thoughts from studying this time period.


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