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Book of Revelation


nathansoz

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In my bible study we are doing a study of biblical prophecy. Naturally the book of Revelation came up. The members of my bible study frequently ask me questions about LDS beliefs, because I do things like talk on this forum and have taken a particular interest in learning more about LDS beliefs. So tonight at bible study I got asked about the Mormon position on the Book of Revelation in the bible. This was something I wasn't sure about, so I told them I would come to you guys and find out more. Do you see it as prophecy for things to come, or perhaps things that have already passed. Or is there another interpretation that you have. This isn't a baited question, and I am not looking to debate or for a debate to start on this tread. I am merely asking for LDS on the board to tell me the church's/their interpretation on the Book.

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The LDS Church does not have a position on the Book of Revelation that I'm aware of.

I pulled my old Institute manual off the shelf and found this:

"The theme of the work (Revelation) is very simple and is stated by John in the first verse; it is a revelation of Jesus Christ. The book of Revelation presents a picture of Christ's dealings with men throughout the ages of earth's history. In particular, for modern men it mirrors the second coming of Jesus, the judgment of mankind, the destruction of the wicked, the Millenium, and the ultimate celestialization of the world."

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Ok, so one more question. A lot of evangelicals would believe in the 'Left Behind' view of the Book of revelations (Rapture, antichrist, tribulation, return of Christ, Judgement, Kingdom). Nehor or anyone can answer this, but does that view more mirror your own or strike discord with it?

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...So tonight at bible study I got asked about the Mormon position on the Book of Revelation in the bible. This was something I wasn't sure about, so I told them I would come to you guys and find out more. Do you see it as prophecy for things to come, or perhaps things that have already passed.

Here's a quote from the (LDS) Smith & Sjohdal commentary on the D&C that helped me considerably in understanding portions of the Book of Revelation:

"In the opening words of the Revelation, John says, 'Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are therein' (1:3), but notwithstanding this promise, the book is commonly left unread. The prophetic part of it is mostly regarded as an unsolvable riddle. And to those who read it, a multitude of opinions concerning the meaning of the visions described present themselves, until Apocalyptic exegesis appears to be a Babylonian babble.

The reasons for this confusion is that the modern interpreters have lost the key to the book. The Revelation of John can never be understood by anyone who supposes that the Church of Christ has remained in uninterrupted activity and development from its first organization till the present time. The book was written to show that the Church would conquer paganism, but that it would itself be driven into exile and remain in absolute obscurity...and that then it would again be established by messengers from heaven, preparatory to the second advent and the Millennium. If this purpose of the book is kept in view, it becomes intelligible." (ed. 1961, p. 478)

Based on that perspective, I've written a book on portions of the Book of Revelation (focusing mostly on prophetic timelines) from an LDS perspective. If you're interested, just look for the main web link in my profile - and a digital version of the book is available there for free (caution: large PDFs = slow downloads).

As a primer though, you might prefer to start with the shorter Daniel book - since it goes hand in hand with a study of Revelation. That book is also accessible via the same main web link.

Basically, in that research, I've pulled together some of what I consider the best insights from LDS and Protestant/Adventist interpretations. Those interpretations complement and reinforce one another surprisingly well - and suggest that the timing and nature of Joseph's prophetic mission were specifically foretold in both the Old and New Testaments. Hope that's helpful.

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According to Joseph Smith, the book of Revelation was one of the "plainest books" ever to be written. On the other hand, he warned the brethren not to trifle with it if they didn't understand it. According to Richard Draper:

John wrote the book of Revelation with a definite objective in mind. His intent grew out of the visionary experience. It was to fulfill the commandment given him directly by Jesus Christ himself (see Rev. 1:11). However, there were other factors at play. Many of the Saints were discouraged, even frightened. They were in the midst of the greatest crisis yet faced by the early Church. The ordeal through which they were passing had terrifying prospects. Rome, the seemingly omnipotent master of their world, had determined that holding to the Christian faith constituted a crime worthy of death. The churches in Asia already knew the effect of that brutal decision. Many undoubtedly wondered how a few powerless Christians could survive against the Latin colossus.

But more than external danger threatened the life of the fledgling Church. ... A false prophetic circle arose that competed with the true prophets for ecclesiastical authority and theological acceptance. False apostles infiltrated the church at Ephesus (see Rev. 2:2); at Pergamos a faction upheld what John called the â??doctrine of Balaamâ? (Rev. 2:14, KJV), which was probably a move to incorporate into Church practice certain elements of the pagan religion of the Romans; while at Thyatira a false prophetess with quite a number of followers seduced many with her teachings (see v. 20). Heresy was spreading everywhere.

The "man of sin" (the Antichrist) was on the minds of many Christians, and remained in the minds of the apostate church well into Medieval times. The church knew that one of the greatest dangers was from within.

From the days of that ministry, the shadow of the Antichrist haunted the peace of the Saints. Paul warned the Thessalonians, the Melitians, and others that a â??falling awayâ? would occur because men would not endure sound doctrine (see 2 Thes. 2:1-5; 2 Tim. 4:3-4; Acts 20:29-31). â??Also of your own selves,â? he told them, â??shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after themâ? (Acts 20:30, KJV). As a result of this falling away the â??man of sin,â? a son of perdition, would be revealed â??who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple [i.e., the church] of God, [showing] himself that he is Godâ? (2 Thes. 2:3-4, KJV).

The Greek word Paul used that is translated as â??falling awayâ? is apostasia. It meant literally to stand apart in immovable opposition, and in a civil sense, â??rebellionâ? or, better, â??revolutionâ? or â??mutiny.â? It carried the idea of an internal takeover by parties hostile to established authority, leadership, and constitution. Paul warned the Church for over three years that there would be such a rebellion. Once the rebellion succeeded, those leaders whom the Savior chose would be replaced by others of a perverse nature (wolves in sheepâ??s clothing) who would change the doctrine (constitution) of Christ to fit their own base desires. Paulâ??s warning shows that the Church was not in danger of totally disappearing. Rather, those antichrists, who would replace Christâ??s gospel with the doctrines of men, would assume control.

In short, the later church feared as a future event something that had already taken place. Long after the apostasy had taken place, church leaders (unaware that the church had already fallen victim to these things) looked warily to the future in the hopes of forestalling it. Some believe the "falling away" was fulfilled in the Reformation. Still, Draper writes:

At the time John wrote Revelation, a power struggle raged within the Christian community. John wrote his work for those who yet clung to the truth. He warned against false prophets and their source of inspiration, and emphasized that God would not allow them to continue without consequence. If the churches chose to reject Godâ??s officers, he would come out in judgment by abandoning the churches and allowing the false leaders to take over. However, this condition would only last for a time. Eventually, the apostate church would be consumed under a blaze of truth and light.

But what of the nation that was the political seat of persecution and whose authority even the least of the Christians felt? The Revelator had an answer. God would move against Rome and the other recreant nations that would follow. His authority would prevail over even these seemingly omnipotent masters. And the powers of hell, which undergirded and supported the corrupt governments and from which they drew both their strength and inspiration, would also incur the terrible wrath of God. Driven into a war lust, they would fight against themselves until the time God would intervene and stop all fighting, rendering them eternally impotent.

Thus, the focus of Revelation â?? the core around which everything revolves â?? centers on the issue of authority. Who really overmasters the world? Is it the political institutions? the powers of evil? or God? To the faithful few, struggling against external pressure and deadly persecutions and being buffeted by alternate voices, the message of Revelation with its omnipotent, wrath-filled yet caring God, must have brought comfort and hope with the promise of final victory.

Opening the Seven Seals: The Visions of John the Revelator

by Richard D. Draper

The book is intended to be read by those who believe it and see in it the hand of God. At the same time, it's intended to baffle and stupefy those who don't believe. In other words, it will only benefit those who understand it.

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Ok, so one more question. A lot of evangelicals would believe in the 'Left Behind' view of the Book of revelations (Rapture, antichrist, tribulation, return of Christ, Judgement, Kingdom). Nehor or anyone can answer this, but does that view more mirror your own or strike discord with it?

Discord. While there are similarities, We see the evangelical Left Behind/'Rapture' understanding doctrine as a very modern development.

Here is a selection from Gospel Principles (1997) that explains our understanding of the timeline:

When Jesus Christ comes again to the earth, he will do the following things:

1. He will cleanse the earth. When Jesus comes again, he will come in power and great glory. At that time the wicked will be destroyed. All things that are corrupt will be burned, and the earth will be cleansed by fire (see D&C 101:24â??25).

2. He will judge his people. When Jesus comes again, he will judge the nations and will divide the righteous from the wicked (see Matthew 25:31â??46). John the Revelator wrote about this judgment: â??I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God â?¦ and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.â? The wicked he saw â??lived not again until the thousand years were finishedâ? (Revelation 20:4â??5; see also D&C 88:95â??98).

3. He will usher in the Millennium. The Millennium is the thousand-year period when Jesus will reign on the earth. At the beginning of this period of time, the righteous will be caught up to meet Jesus at his coming. His coming will begin the millennial reign.

4. He will complete the Resurrection. Those who have obtained the privilege of coming forth in the Resurrection of the Just will rise from their graves. They will be caught up to meet the Savior as he comes down from heaven.

After Jesus Christ rose from the dead, other righteous people who had died were also resurrected. They appeared in Jerusalem and also on the American continent (see Matthew 27:52â??53; 3 Nephi 23:9). This was the beginning of the First Resurrection. Some people have been resurrected since then. Those who already have been resurrected and those who will be resurrected at the time of his coming will all inherit the glory of the celestial kingdom (see D&C 76:50â??70).

After the beginning of the Millennium, those who will receive a terrestrial glory will be resurrected (see D&C 88:99; 76:71â??80). When all these people have been resurrected, the First Resurrection will be completed.

The wicked who are living at the time of the second coming of the Lord will be destroyed in the flesh. They, along with the wicked who are already dead, will have to wait until the end of the Millennium before they can come forth from their graves. At the end of the Millennium, the Second Resurrection will take place. All of the remaining dead will rise to meet God. They will either inherit the telestial kingdom or be cast into outer darkness with Satan (see D&C 76:32â??33, 81â??112).

5. He will take his rightful place as king of heaven and earth. When Jesus comes, he will establish his government on the earth. The Church will become part of that kingdom. He will rule all the people of the earth in peace for a thousand years.

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In addition, in my opinion, it's important to understand the First Temple imagery that is used consistently throughout the book. Those who have experienced High Priestly Throne Visions (like Elijah, Nephi, or in our day, Joseph Smith) would have understood it clearly. Understanding of the relationship between High Priestly Ascent traditions associated with the Old Testament (Aaronic Priesthood) Temple, and the Latter-Day Saint (Aaronic & Melchizedek Priesthood) Temple experience also helps solidify the understanding of the symbols used in the text.

In terms of content, the book is much like the Old Testament prophetic books in that they discussed events in terms of present and near-future events specifically relevant for those living in the time the Vision was revealed, as well as having a deeper Eschatological symbolic meaning as well, especially relevant for those living in the Latter Days.

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I like the "Opening the Seven Seals" book by Draper if you want to read more about Revelation. There are also several books that attempt to interpret what the various prophecies are, though it would be difficult to sift through all of those. Even just those by LDS authors are all over the place.

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Ok, so one more question. A lot of evangelicals would believe in the 'Left Behind' view of the Book of revelations (Rapture, antichrist, tribulation, return of Christ, Judgement, Kingdom). Nehor or anyone can answer this, but does that view more mirror your own or strike discord with it?

While not exactly a match, most LDSs would feel comfortable with a "post-trib" label, assuming we understand the rubric in the first place.

Lehi

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The book of Revelation has so many varying theologies trying to interpret it that it cannot stand alone. It has to be read in conjunction with Daniel, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Zachariah and other apocalyptic books. The entire doctrine of the Rapture was taken from a misinterpretation of Revelation, wherein all "believers" in Jesus would be taken to meet Jesus in the air...seven years before He actually appears in Jerusalem. One woman I asked about this doctrine, and whether she believed it, said, "Oh, yes, it's in the Bible!"

This is what happens when people read books about Revelation rather than Revelation itself. The logic is that since the "Beast" makes everyone have a mark in their hands or foreheads, and since you can't buy nor sell without the mark, then obviously the believers would have to be taken away; otherwise they wouldn't be able to eat. So they'd be dead when Jesus came. Getting raptured out, on the other hand, would solve the problem nicely.

The return of Christ and the events leading up to it is what Revelation features that makes it attractive to Christians. But when Jesus comes, those who "meet" Him will do just that â?? they'll meet Him in the air as He descends.

I, too, like Draper's book, but he's very careful (sometimes too careful). But he contends that those who interpret Revelation need to be familiar with apocalyptic literature and how it works, which is true. I still haven't read a book that is really satisfying. Where LDS really differ from mainstream Christianity is that we believe that the Lord will lead His people through these difficult times via revelation (small-r, not big r). As the return of Christ approaches, the only two organized societies existing will be Babylon and Zion. Babylon is depicted as being "the world." Zion, on the other hand, will be the people of God. Mention is made in the scripture of "fleeing to Zion" and places of gathering. He who will not pick up his sword against his neighbor must flee to Zion for safety. But without revelation (small-r), how will God have a people? If revelation ceased 2,000 years ago, how will God raise up two prophets (Revelation 11)?

In Revelation 21, John writes: "And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband." Many Christians believe that this city will descend mystically out of heaven; however, latter-day prophets have said that this is symbolism. New Jerusalem will be built by the saints on Earth, but they will do it via revelation, which comes from heaven. Note the allusion to it being prepared "as a bride adorned for her husband." We who are upon the Earth are the bride, which means that the New Jerusalem is prepared by us for the Savior. It means that the city will be built by the command of God via revelation that comes down from God out of heaven. Now unless someone knew this by revelation, how would they know otherwise? They wouldn't. They'd assume the city would descend out of heaven already built. Having two places, Jerusalem and New Jerusalem, or Zion, was an astounding piece of theology for someone like Joseph Smith to just come up with on his own. Yet in the light of his discourses and writings, it makes all the sense in the world. The same is true for combining the concept of Adam-ondi-Ahman with the Ancient of Days described by Adam, and the return of priesthood keys and stewardship in preparation for the return of Christ.

There's been some discussions of the European Union being the "ten horns" from which the Beast arises (small horn). If so, then we're entering the final phases just before the judgments are to begin. This is the scary part, and the part we need to be prepared for.

We live in "interesting" times.

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Ok, so one more question. A lot of evangelicals would believe in the 'Left Behind' view of the Book of revelations (Rapture, antichrist, tribulation, return of Christ, Judgement, Kingdom).

...does that view more mirror your own or strike discord with it?

This is my personal beliefs and does not represent the LDS church. I believe it is what was understood by the early saints and what LDS should be considering these things to be.

Rapture:

Prior to the "great and terrible day of the Lord" which is the sore tribulations, etc. that will be poured out upon the wicked to destroy them from the earth, there would be a heavenly abode that the faithful and righteous saints would be "caught up" to where they could dwell in safety during this time. This is where those "raptured" will go and be in "heaven".

Christians mistake this for some kind of a multi-dimensional miraculous disappearance of people in an instant. This is because they do not understand what "heaven" means pertaining to us. Jesus is the "light of the world" or as Genesis 1 prophesies He is "the greater light to rule the day". God likens the high and noble souls that govern in the affairs of men to objects in our sky but in reality is defining "heavens" not so much as some other "place" as He is defining these souls themselves as the heavens that pertain to us. Being with them, wherever they are, is being in heaven.

Our sun in the sky is the Lord of our Planet and is it's "heaven". Our Savior, likened unto the sun in the sky, is the Lord of mankind and is it's "heaven". Since we know He will return to the earth, the place where He is on the earth is "heaven". The place where those "caught up" will be is the society the Savior will be gathering to Himself upon His return advent. Being in this small society that revolves around the King-Messiah is being caught up to heaven, which society is Zion.

Thus, Zion is in fact the dwelling place of the Lord. He is its temple. Where will it be established? Here on earth! This is where people will go that are "caught up" unto the Lord.

How many years did it take Noah to build the ark? 365 years. How long did it take Enoch to build Zion? 365 years. Thus, we see a distinct parallel between the ark of Noah and the Zion of Enoch. Zion is the place of refuge and safety against the coming storms just as Noah's ark was. It won't be some interdimensional disappearance. The "gates" of heaven are the gates of Zion. This is the gate that FEW shall find. They are the pearly gates. You have to find all the pearls of truth that will ultimately lead you to where you need to be in order to escape the tribulations.

Most people are swine that trample pearls and rend those who bring them. Christians have the idea little more than their wrote prayers is sufficient to have them garnered to the places of safety. The scriptures do not support this. A true believer in Christ is not trite about it and they do not take delight in an instant "salvation" that precludes their faithful actions to demonstrate their belief. The scriptures are clear that man's faith would be tested to the core and that only very few would be heirs of eternal life. Christians who have bought into the rapture idea are using that as a means to further support their equally irrational concept of salvation based on trite acceptance that requires no demonstration and manifestation of fruits unto salvation, meaning unto the establishing of Zion. The rapture belief of Christians exposes their whole salvation scheme for what it really is, nonsense.

Anyway, what does this have to do with Joseph Smith? It was his understanding that it was his responsibility, under the House of Ephraim, the birthright of the House of Israel, to carry out his birthright responsibility to bring in Zion in the latter days and establish the political kingdom of God upon the earth and be the salvation to all the tribes of Israel by gathering them in to Zion.

In reality, the implication of this is that Joseph Smith himself was in the position to be the King-Messiah and had they all been faithful he would have been. His society was going to be the place of safety. And, if Zion had been established, then the wrath of God could have been poured out upon the wicked so that the "meek could inherit the earth". They would have been able to build their ark and been preserved from the "flood" of wrath.

But, it is no stretch of anyone's imagination to see that the saints then did not prove faithful and Joseph Smith was taken from them. He also made some mistakes as well since the Lord considered that he had some transgressions. D&C 132:60. But, concerning those transgressions we are told that he would be justified in them and that we are not to condemn him for them. They apparently play an essential role in the unfolding of things. One of which, as Isaiah 57 gives clear reference to, is to serve as a stumbling block for the proud and stubborn Israelites to trip on and be tested thereby. Will they be able to sort out the good of Zion from Joseph Smith's efforts and reject the bad or will they outright reject Zion and be lost in the storms to come.

Anti-Christ:

The Anti-Christ is an interesting topic. I believe a very careful examination of 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 will give a good picture of the context for him. He is someone standing in a legitimate office of authority that must be cast down out of his place upon the Savior's return. Most LDS will find it quite disturbing that the profile of this person is that he is in a position of authority in the Church. Only a faithful priesthood holder is a candidate to become a Son of Perdition. Also, only the LDS have valid temple worship in this day and age and so only a member of the LDS church will qualify. This implies that at some point in our future a leader in our church will be cast down as a Son of Perdition and be moved out of his place and replaced by the King-Messiah.

The reason he will be moved out of his place is because he will be making deals with the satanic world powers that are really just trying to take over and do away with the free-will of mankind. They want a totalitarian globalist government that tells everyone what they can and cannot do where things are regulated and mandated and taxed and subsidized and on and on... This leader will be going along with that instead of performing his duty to "be like unto Moses" who went into the court of Pharaoh and said, "Let my people go!" Rather, the Man of Sin is assisting Satan in taking from the children of God their rights and privilages and derailing the Zion they are responsible to build. He is telling lies to the people because evidently they like the lies. That is why God is allowing this "falling away" prior to the return of Christ, to find out who loves delusion more than truth.

The lie the Anti-Christ offers is what they want to hear so God is letting them hear it. They want to be told everything is fine without further consideration. They believe they are only going to have to accept their loss of privileges for a short season and then things will be fine. You don't have to do anything but go along with everything, blah blah blah. We are taking care of everyhing on your behalf and you don't have to worry about stuff as long as you just "follow the prophet" you will be fine... etc. Thus, it becomes idol worship of their fallible leaders and relying upon the arm of flesh, which shall fail.

Tribulation:

This is the time when the saints that were not "raptured" to safety in Zion are to be tested to the core. These will be given over to be subject to the Satanic powers that will have totally overcome the entire world. All who do not make their covenants with this evil beast will have their heads chopped off. This will be the only path left for salvation for those caught into the snares of the beast. If they consent to the beast's ownership of them then they will have given themselves to the beast and foregone anything Christ can do for them. They will be sealed to the adversary. So, as I see it, the options are: 1) find and be a part of Zion here and now, 2) stay in Babylon and get your head removed and have your resurrection in Zion or 3) be sealed to the adversary and lose your soul.

The roadmap to Zion is marked by many pearls in scripture. If you don't know Zion or have the least bit of doubt about its particulars then you are woefully unprepared and have much work to catch up on. If you don't know what Zion is you won't find it and you will not be a recipient of Eternal Life. Christians who have rejected the "latter rain" have put themselves at a horrendous disadvantage. Who cares if Joseph Smith may have made a mistake or two here or there... Judge his work based on whether or not what he was given to establish was Zion or not. Any honest inquiry should be in awe of what he was endeavoring to establish. Some of the world's greatest thinkers recognized it as a system, that if it could survive its 4th generation, would take over the world. They saw it for what it is, and this is why such persecution was heaped upon them by the evil powers of the world. If your knowledge is insufficient to know why this is true then you are adrift in the dark without oar, lantern or sextant.

Return of Christ:

This is a subject that there is a whole lot of varying opinions about. This much I know, the way in which Jesus Christ will return will very much be in accordance with how the Father came and dwelt in and manifested through Him. There will be a new person, born and raised up, as is prophesied that one like unto Moses will be raised up among his brethren, and he shall be Messiah. I see everything pointing towards someone from the House of Joseph obtaining union with Jesus Christ the same way Jesus obtained union with the Father. This man will manifest Jesus Christ in both word and deed as Jesus did the Father. This is the true identity of Shiloh as prophesied in Genesis 49:10. He comes from the House of Joseph, which is why the scepter leaves the House of Judah when Shiloh comes. The promise to Jesse through David to always have a descendant upon the thrones of Israel was to their seed, not their house. Thus, Shiloh will also have a mixture of the blood of Jesse in him as well to validate this promise. This is confirmed when you look at D&C 113 where the three Messianic servants are spoken of there. Jesus from House of Judah (stem), Joseph Smith from the House of Ephraim (rod) and the coming King-Messiah from the House of Joseph (the branch from the root of Jesse).

As is a typical pattern in scripture in many places, the first two are passed over and fail but the third has success. Take the Day of Atonement and look at just the animals pertaining to the offering for the people. There were two goats and a ram. The first goat and the ram are killed. The third animal, the second goat, escapes and is victorious.

(The Edomite Pharisees perverted this ordinance and started killing the escape goat, but it was not given this way by the Lord. The reason the goat goes out into an uninhabited wilderness is because it is the goat's job to crush the adversary's head. This is the extermination of all those who are polluted with the adversary's spirit. Thus, the adversary had his evil children try and pervert the ordinances to confuse the people's minds on what was really being propheside by these rituals in an effort to thwart God's justice from being properly meted out upon the wicked. All rituals are prophetic as given, not as corrupted to. Thus, the Law of Retribution will be carried out by the third animal who shall escape to Zion and become the Adam's and Eve's to multiply and re-plenish the earth.)

Judgement:

This is actually when Christ will finish up the work of the atonement. He has taken upon himself all the sins of the people. Does He have to keep them forever or is the Father going to take them from Him? No. Absolutely not. Where do they end up? They are given back to the people who have not repented and believed in Him in truth and righteousness. He apportions the gall from the cup of bitterness to each individual per their thoughts, words and deeds and then reaps them down and removes them from the earth and sends their souls into everlasting burning. These become the vessels of wrath upon which the atonment is meted out. Judgment is the completion of the atonement by way of divine retribution upon the wicked.

Kingdom:

This is one part of Zion. It is a political kingdom where the King-Messiah serves as its king. The difference about His kingship from other kingships is he isn't the king of surfs. He is the King of Kings. The kind of kingdom He establishes is one that makes every man who worthily enters a king in his own right. What will actually govern the people isn't a person but rather God's Law. The job of the King of Kings is to make sure that it is actually God's Law that is governing the people, not himself.

JBug

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This is my personal beliefs and does not represent the LDS church. I believe it is what was understood by the early saints and what LDS should be considering these things to be.

Anti-Christ:

The Anti-Christ is an interesting topic. I believe a very careful examination of 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 will give a good picture of the context for him. He is someone standing in a legitimate office of authority that must be cast down out of his place upon the Savior's return. Most LDS will find it quite disturbing that the profile of this person is that he is in a position of authority in the Church. Only a faithful priesthood holder is a candidate to become a Son of Perdition.

A key part of the sketchiness of interpreting things like this is applying modern usages to ancient writers. Specifically, to the Modern Church Usage of the term Son of Perdition. Its use in the ancient scriptures was not nearly as narrowly defined as it has been in our dispensation, and referred to those who did the works of evil in opposition to the works of good. The lost who led others astray.

For what it's worth, Elder James Talmage postulated that this particular Son of Perdition mentioned in 2 Thess was the specific Pope whose actions concerning the sale of Indulgences sparked the Reformation...

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A key part of the sketchiness of interpreting things like this is applying modern usages to ancient writers. Specifically, to the Modern Church Usage of the term Son of Perdition. Its use in the ancient scriptures was not nearly as narrowly defined as it has been in our dispensation, and referred to those who did the works of evil in opposition to the works of good. The lost who led others astray.

For what it's worth, Elder James Talmage postulated that this particular Son of Perdition mentioned in 2 Thess was the specific Pope whose actions concerning the sale of Indulgences sparked the Reformation...

That postulation is easily shown to be baseless unless at the same time he can also demonstrate in what manner the Lord was the one who personally put him out of his place and cast him down. He would also have to show how that Pope righteously acquired his priesthood. But, I guess you are saying that this reference to the Man of Sin, the big Kahuna of Evil, is not a Son of Perdition.

Have you considered what position Lucifer held in the pre-existence? Isn't it possible he could have been the President of the Church then? We know he was vey high, and in fact some traditions indicate Lucifer was at the pinnacle, in authority prior to his fall.

Are you a member who is willing to consider the possibility of a president of the church joining hands with the adversary's plan of compulsion and deliver it carefully and craftily?

Or, are you a member who has bought into the "just follow the prophet" idolatry? Which idolatry makes a fallible mortal man into an infallible person, a God, just as this chapter says the Man of Sin shall consider himself and promote others to consider him such?

JBug

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He would also have to show how that Pope righteously acquired his priesthood. But, I guess you are saying that this reference to the Man of Sin, the big Kahuna of Evil, is not a Son of Perdition.

No, he wouldn't. Since, again, you are using the Modern Church Usage of the phrase Son of Perdition, and retrojecting it into a time and a place and to an individual who did not necessarily use the phrase as we use it today. I believe one who proclaimed to be the Vicar of Christ, the High Priest of the Church, who made claim to the authority of being able to remit sins through money - and who at that time and place was believed by most of the world to be who he said he was - fits the bill.

I don't know whether or not Elder Talmage's theory is correct or not. It doesn't bother if it is, or isn't. I think it's just as possible that it than it isn't.

Are you a member who is willing to consider the possibility of a president of the church joining hands with the adversary's plan of compulsion and deliver it carefully and craftily?

Or, are you a member who has bought into the "just follow the prophet" idolatry? Which idolatry makes a fallible mortal man into an infallible person, a God, just as this chapter says the Man of Sin shall consider himself and promote others to consider him such?

I am a member who believes the words of Wilford Woodruff, "The Lord will never permit [any] man who stands as President of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the programme. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that, the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so He will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty." (see Official Declaration 1 in the Doctrine & Covenants)

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Antichrist...He is someone standing in a legitimate office of authority that must be cast down out of his place upon the Savior's return. Most LDS will find it quite disturbing that the profile of this person is that he is in a position of authority in the Church. Only a faithful priesthood holder is a candidate to become a Son of Perdition. Also, only the LDS have valid temple worship in this day and age and so only a member of the LDS church will qualify. This implies that at some point in our future a leader in our church will be cast down as a Son of Perdition and be moved out of his place and replaced by the King-Messiah.

The "man of sin" spoken of is Lucifer. And what is being described is the apostasy. The scriptures are clear in this â?? that the apostasy was to come first, then the Restoration. There is no prophecy regarding a falling away in the restored church.

President Heber J. Grant said: "The falling away which had been predicted by the prophets had come. The man of sin, the son of perdition, was revealed, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. (2nd Thessalonians 2:3-4). Thus centuries passed, centuries during which darkness covered the earth and gross darkness the minds of the people, centuries during which Satan, in an orgy of Pagan idolatry, ruled the world." (Conference Report, April 1930,, p.7)

There are polygamous cults out there who cite this scripture in an attempt to undermine LDS church leaders. Don't fall for it.

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In my bible study we are doing a study of biblical prophecy. Naturally the book of Revelation came up. The members of my bible study frequently ask me questions about LDS beliefs, because I do things like talk on this forum and have taken a particular interest in learning more about LDS beliefs. So tonight at bible study I got asked about the Mormon position on the Book of Revelation in the bible. This was something I wasn't sure about, so I told them I would come to you guys and find out more. Do you see it as prophecy for things to come, or perhaps things that have already passed. Or is there another interpretation that you have. This isn't a baited question, and I am not looking to debate or for a debate to start on this tread. I am merely asking for LDS on the board to tell me the church's/their interpretation on the Book.

We have a knowledge of the seven seals as the works of the entire reign of man on the earth. for 6000 years as the six seals then the seventh is the last millenium of peace on earth, and will be at this time period for us to bring to fruitation all of Gods promised blessings and finalizing of these eternal blessings. I;E... temple sealings opportunities for all the 80 or so billion people whom were on this earth. then after that thousand years is over. judgement day e;t;c..... {we know we are now in the sixth seal}.Nobody knows excatly where in the sixth seal, but i think its late in the seal myself. :P

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There is a lot more to LDS understanding of the Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ than we have seen here. That is to be expected, since the book is written in a manner to both reveal and conceal truth. However, there are keys we LDSs have that others lack (or do not accept).

For instance, we have an entire section of the Doctrine and Covenants on this book.

Revelation given to Joseph Smith the Prophet, at Hiram, Ohio, March 1832. HC 1: 253â??255. The Prophet wrote, â??In connection with the translation of the Scriptures, I received the following explanation of the Revelation of St. John.â?

1 Q. What is the sea of glass spoken of by John, 4th chapter, and 6th verse of the Revelation?

A. It is the earth, in its sanctified, immortal, and eternal state.

2 Q. What are we to understand by the four beasts, spoken of in the same verse?

A. They are figurative expressions, used by the Revelator, John, in describing heaven, the paradise of God, the happiness of man, and of beasts, and of creeping things, and of the fowls of the air; that which is spiritual being in the likeness of that which is temporal; and that which is temporal in the likeness of that which is spiritual; the spirit of man in the likeness of his person, as also the spirit of the beast, and every other creature which God has created.

3 Q. Are the four beasts limited to individual beasts, or do they represent classes or orders?

A. They are limited to four individual beasts, which were shown to John, to represent the glory of the classes of beings in their destined order or sphere of creation, in the enjoyment of their eternal felicity.

4 Q. What are we to understand by the eyes and wings, which the beasts had?

A. Their eyes are a representation of light and knowledge, that is, they are full of knowledge; and their wings are a representation of power, to move, to act, etc.

5 Q. What are we to understand by the four and twenty elders, spoken of by John?

A. We are to understand that these elders whom John saw, were elders who had been faithful in the work of the ministry and were dead; who belonged to the seven churches, and were then in the paradise of God.

6 Q. What are we to understand by the book which John saw, which was sealed on the back with seven seals?

A. We are to understand that it contains the revealed will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the seven thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence.

7 Q. What are we to understand by the seven seals with which it was sealed?

A. We are to understand that the first seal contains the things of the first thousand years, and the second also of the second thousand years, and so on until the seventh.

8 Q. What are we to understand by the four angels, spoken of in the 7th chapter and 1st verse of Revelation?

A. We are to understand that they are four angels sent forth from God, to whom is given power over the four parts of the earth, to save life and to destroy; these are they who have the everlasting gospel to commit to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people; having power to shut up the heavens, to seal up unto life, or to cast down to the regions of darkness.

9 Q. What are we to understand by the angel ascending from the east, Revelation 7th chapter and 2nd verse?

A. We are to understand that the angel ascending from the east is he to whom is given the seal of the living God over the twelve tribes of Israel; wherefore, he crieth unto the four angels having the everlasting gospel, saying: Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And, if you will receive it, this is Elias which was to come to gather together the tribes of Israel and restore all things.

10 Q. What time are the things spoken of in this chapter to be accomplished?

A. They are to be accomplished in the sixth thousand years, or the opening of the sixth seal.

11 Q. What are we to understand by sealing the one hundred and forty-four thousand, out of all the tribes of Israelâ??twelve thousand out of every tribe?

A. We are to understand that those who are sealed are high priests, ordained unto the holy order of God, to administer the everlasting gospel; for they are they who are ordained out of every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, by the angels to whom is given power over the nations of the earth, to bring as many as will come to the church of the Firstborn.

12 Q. What are we to understand by the sounding of the trumpets, mentioned in the 8th chapter of Revelation?

A. We are to understand that as God made the world in six days, and on the seventh day he finished his work, and sanctified it, and also formed man out of the dust of the earth, even so, in the beginning of the seventh thousand years will the Lord God sanctify the earth, and complete the salvation of man, and judge all things, and shall redeem all things, except that which he hath not put into his power, when he shall have sealed all things, unto the end of all things; and the sounding of the trumpets of the seven angels are the preparing and finishing of his work, in the beginning of the seventh thousand yearsâ??the preparing of the way before the time of his coming.

13 Q. When are the things to be accomplished, which are written in the 9th chapter of Revelation?

A. They are to be accomplished after the opening of the seventh seal, before the coming of Christ.

14 Q. What are we to understand by the little book which was eaten by John, as mentioned in the 10th chapter of Revelation?

A. We are to understand that it was a mission, and an ordinance, for him to gather the tribes of Israel; behold, this is Elias, who, as it is written, must come and restore all things.

15 Q. What is to be understood by the two witnesses, in the eleventh chapter of Revelation?

A. They are two prophets that are to be raised up to the Jewish nation in the last days, at the time of the restoration, and to prophesy to the Jews after they are gathered and have built the city of Jerusalem in the land of their fathers.

Enjoy,

Lehi

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I don't know whether or not Elder Talmage's theory is correct or not. It doesn't bother if it is, or isn't. I think it's just as possible that it than it isn't.

The point here is you have not read 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 with logical integrity and honesty to trace the inevitable implications to know how it is to play out. The major point being WHEN the Savior returns He has to put down a STANDING apostasy.

I am a member who believes the words of Wilford Woodruff, "The Lord will never permit [any] man who stands as President of this Church to lead you astray. It is not in the programme. It is not in the mind of God. If I were to attempt that, the Lord would remove me out of my place, and so He will any other man who attempts to lead the children of men astray from the oracles of God and from their duty." (see Official Declaration 1 in the Doctrine & Covenants)

You are a member who does not understand what the manifesto actually says.

If you read this critically in full context you will come to understand in what manner the Lord will never permit any man standing as President of the Church to lead astray the members. The key phrase is "It is not in the programme." Have you looked at the programme? Do you know what it is? The programme is that it is the responsibility of the members to pull down an officer that is not performing their duty. This responsibility goes all the way to the president of the church. Therefore, the president of the church cannot lead a faithful people astray per the Lord's programme. The only people that will go astray are people that desire to go astray. In which case, if they are going astray they are all going astray together. Read D&C 107 very carefully and you will see that this is an entirely valid way to understand this.

The Lord finds it totally repugnant that you would accept such a false premise to make a fallible man into an infallible man. He's quite upset that the church essentially rejected the higher laws and in this manner He has delivered them up to be deluded and taken in a snare. My soul knew the way the church understood this to be foolish and false. The day it finally dawned in my mind what the Lord was up to here it was such a huge relief. God's Word could have integrity consistent with the principles I knew to be true. Leaning on the arm of flesh I have always known to be wrong and that's what the majority of the membership of the church are doing with this.

Also, Wilford Woodruff was removed as a Lord's Anointed. The church has been a widow ever since.

Carefully study this out before you blow this off and casually retort me.

JBug

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The Lord finds it totally repugnant that you would accept such a false premise to make a fallible man into an infallible man. He's quite upset that the church essentially rejected the higher laws and in this manner He has delivered them up to be deluded and taken in a snare. My soul knew the way the church understood this to be foolish and false. The day it finally dawned in my mind what the Lord was up to here it was such a huge relief. God's Word could have integrity consistent with the principles I knew to be true. Leaning on the arm of flesh I have always known to be wrong and that's what the majority of the membership of the church are doing with this.

Also, Wilford Woodruff was removed as a Lord's Anointed. The church has been a widow ever since.

Carefully study this out before you blow this off and casually retort me.

JBug

I'm quite sure you don't speak for God. Also, one of the board rules is no proselytizing.

[/threadjack]

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