That Which Bringeth Joy


I have been sitting here for a moment pondering how to write about the latter-day Zion. I just published a 332 page book about Zion with over 800 quotes, and my dilemma is how to distill it into a few uplifting paragraphs.

It is very hard to understand the latter-day Church without understanding Zion. Another way to view this is that much of what we believe and hope for can only be understood completely when viewed through the lens of Zion.

I searched and prayed and fasted and ached for 15 years before I could write the previous paragraph. When the Lord finally got through to me, it changed everything I understood about mortality. It changed everything I understood about the gospel, about the temple, and about the priesthood.

If I were forced at gunpoint to describe the latter-day Zion in one sentence it would be this: Obtaining Zion worthiness is the fullest outcome of all of the ordinances of the priesthood, it is the highest accomplishment of mortality, and that for which we all hope, yet have no name to call it.

When I finally realized, or suspected, might be more accurate, that the latter-day Zion we will build prior to Christ’s return was intended to be a translated city, exactly like Enoch’s, I was stunned. I had never heard anyone teach this. If you have read “The Triumph of Zion” (TToZ) you have read this story. Forgive me for repeating.

I contacted Joshua, whom I had come to know and respect because of his work on LDS research. I asked him if he had ever read an authoritative quote that our Zion would be a translated city.

He replied that he had not, but that he would do some research and let me know. About three months later I got an email indicating that he was having some success. About three months beyond that, he emailed me a 123 page document filled with quotes establishing this very fact, that our latter-day Zion had to be a translated city before Christ returned.

As I studied his research I was shocked. This was unplowed sod to me. Then, as I added my own research I found more and more. It seemed that every prophet from Joseph Smith to Joseph Fielding Smith wrote about this very fact. The Spirit wrought upon me mightily, and I began compiling this research into the TToZ.

The end effect of all this was that I realized that if we were being commanded to build a translated (or translatable) city, that we were also being commanded to understand, seek and obtain the requisite worthiness for, if not the actual state of translation. It is an idea that takes some prayerful pondering to fully understand.

Yet, there are literally tens of thousands of people who have been translated throughout sacred history. Cities full of them in fact. We have been promised even greater things in this, the fullness of times. And I have come to believe with all of my heart that this is the intended and greatest outcome of the latter-day church, to actually become Zion – but a Zion that exceeds our present paradigm of what Zion is by eternal orders of magnitude.

Over the next few Un-Blogs I am hoping to dig deeper into the subject of Zion and what it really is to be. I don’t believe I can “prove” or convince anyone that this vision of Zion is true. But, it is. And it is glorious to my soul. It has caused my soul to soar to the very threshold of heaven. Any person who seeks will find.

If thou shalt ask, thou shalt receive revelation upon revelation, knowledge upon knowledge, that thou mayest know the mysteries and peaceable things—that which bringeth joy, that which bringeth life eternal. (D&C 42:61)

Brother John

© March 2011, John M. Pontius, all rights reserved for the contents of this blog and website.

About John Pontius

I am a lover of truth.
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5 Responses to That Which Bringeth Joy

  1. Donald says:

    Thank you again. I spent the afternoon listening (again) to your fireside from July 2008…. then finding this blog today. Things I need to hear and feel 🙂 … Looking forward to (and preparing ) for that glorious day. Thank you.

    Donald
    Provo

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  2. Elizabeth Edwards says:

    Hi Brother John,
    It has been a couple of weeks since I checked in with your blog so it was interesting to me that the last few posts have been exactly what I have been personally studying and feeling impressed to bring more of in my own life. I had read a quote that said Zion could not be built or lived in unless people were living the law of the Celestial kingdom, then I was intrigued about studying what exactly that meant… What it meant to be sanctified, and yesterday I was impressed that I also needed to study about being purified! I feel, after reading your posts that I am headed in the right direction and I am grateful for the confirmation. Thanks very much. By the way, is TTOZ your new book that you just published? I went to Amazon. There are some good reviews of your book, and one not so good one, but I believe based on the spring board your book provides for people to get into the scriptures and work harder in their lives to be a Zion people, that the gentleman’s comments hold little water. I love the scriptures, I am not as studied as you are, but I love the Lord and I love to learn. Thank you so much.
    I can’t wait until your FTL book is republished! I think I got one of the ones that had a lot of editorial mistakes in it. Let us know when it is done! Elizabeth

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    • unblogmysoul says:

      Hi Elizabeth,

      I find that fellow’s comments on Amazon.com to be interesting in that he discounts hundreds of quotes becuase “we don’t use those any more”. I guess truth has an expiration date. I hope he finds what he’s looking for at the end of his journey, becuase I certainly did. Let’s pray for him and everyone like him.

      Brother John

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  3. darrell brashear says:

    Dear brother John. We (a group of about 6 of us) have just concluded a marvelous scripture study in our family home evening. The aching, the fasting and praying that you offered is beginning to bear fruits in our lives. After reading your book “The Triumph Of Zion”, our scripture studies have very much come alive. We find many witnesses throughout the scriptures that speak of the establishment of Zion, and the mission of the hundred and fourty-four thousand. The amazing thing is, over these past few weeks the words of Isaiah have been opening up to us (especially the chapters placed in The Book Of Mormon). The Lord and Savior Himself said, “And now, behold, I say unto you that ye ought to search these things. Yea, a COMMANDMENT I give unto you that ye search these things diligently; for great are the words of Isaiah”. (3 Nephi 23:1) We have been amazed to find that the book of Isaiah refers to the building up of Zion, and these chosen messengers (144,000) going out into all the world to gather the elect into Zion. The comforting thing is that these elect are mentioned as the ones who are the poor, the downcast, the outcasts of Israel, the ones who were in bondage to the Assyrian (Satan), but delivered by the hand of their Redeemer. We are finding these same truths mentioned all throughout the book of Isaiah, and to add to the beauty and amazement of it all is that these things are mentioned thoughout all the scriptures. The blessings are so beautiful; the comfort so profound; the love for our Savior so enhanced, and the desire to come up to Zion unconquerable. We are excited as to what our future searching will reveal. We feel we are finally coming to understand the meaning of the parable of the pearl of great price…”Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it”. (Matthew 13:45-46) Brother, we can’t thank you enough for being the instrument in the Lord’s hands to introduce these truths to us enabling us to also seek and find for ourselves these beautiful truths mentioned all throughout the scriptures. We know the Lord will bless you for the fruits this shall bear, not only for those of us who are now discovering them, but also for all of those that the Father shall place in our paths to share these truths with. Knowing these things causes Babylon to lose power in our lives. Our quest for Zion is now a real one, and we know if we continue seeking, asking, and knocking, we will find and obtain it. Because of the things you have been permitted to share, brother, you will be loved forever. Sincerely sister Amy, brother Cheyenne, and brother Darrell

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