The prophetic word teaches that before the Universal Coming, there will be a great, latter-day temple built in Old Jerusalem. This temple will be become built in the Zion format, meaning that those who build it will be of equal spiritual stature as those who build the temple in the New Jerusalem. This means that the Jews must have embraced their Savior prior to building it. They must have keys from the latter-day kingdom to build it, and must have the pure temple ordinances to perform within this, most-prophesied, and greatest-of-all temples of the Most High God.
“Truly, truly shall it be. Jerusalem shall rise again. As she fell from grace because she forsook the living God, so shall she rise again when she once more worships her Eternal King in the beauty of holiness. As she fell because of iniquity, so shall she be restored through righteousness. When the Jews receive the fulness of the everlasting gospel as it has been restored through the Prophet Joseph Smith, they will return to Jerusalem as the Lord’s true legal administrators to build up Jerusalem as a Zion and to place again on the ancient site the temple of the new kingdom. And then when the Lord comes, the ancient city will shine forth with a glory and a splendor never before known among mortals.” (McConkie, Millennial Messiah, p. 300)
The prophet Joel, whose words the angel Moroni quoted to Joseph Smith, informed us the Lord “Will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call. (Joel 2:30-32)
These seminal events of the Sun being darkened and the moon turned into blood are everywhere noted as being after the seventh seal is opened, and before the Universal Second Coming.. (Revelation 8:12, D&C 29:14; JS Matthew 1:33; D&C 45:41-42) Joel also places them after Jerusalem has become a “deliverance”.
Consider the apparent order of events surrounding the building of the temple in Old Jerusalem and the Second Coming:
- The Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world. (JS Matthew 1:31)
- Zion to be built and the temple built there. (D&C 133: 9, 12-15; 45:43; 45:64; also see UnBlog “Zion Must be Built”)
- Great destruction. 2/3 of humans killed. All of the sea killed. (Rev. 8 & 9)
- The Abomination of Desolations will again occur (Also Matthew 24:29, 34-35; JST Matthew 24:33-36; Mark 13:24-25, 30-31; JST Mark 13:37-40; Luke 21:32-33; JST Luke 23:32). The original Abomination was when Titus and the roman legions slaughtered 1,100,000 Jews, destroyed the temple and ploughed the city in search of gold. Jerusalem will again be subject to a similar horror. (JS Matthew 1:32)
- This time it will be different however, Jesus Christ will save them before they are all destroyed. Consider the words of Zachariah:
“For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle. And his feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south. And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.” (Zachariah 14:2-5, 8-9)
- Then will Jesus Christ come to the Mount of Olives to save the Jews. (Zach 14, quoted above)
- After the tribulation of those days (the Abomination at Jerusalem), the Sun will be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars will fall from heaven. (JS Matthew 1:33)
- The temple at Old Jerusalem will be built and the “Living Waters” shall go out from it. (Zach 14 quoted above)
The point being made by all of this is that the Jews cannot build this Zion temple in Old Jerusalem until they come again to Christ, which will only be after their deliverance by Jesus Christ, and before the Universal Second Coming. (See UnBlog “The Second Coming at Jerusalem”) This of necessity means that there will be sufficient time between their deliverance and the Second Coming to accomplish building the temple and turning Jerusalem into a “defense” and refuge.
- Jesus Christ will send his angels before Him to gather together the remainder of His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. (JS Matthew 1:37) My elect will see the signs of these things, and know that He is near, even at the doors. (JS Matthew 1:39) It will be in an hour that “ye think not”, in a day when “ye look not for Him, in an hour that he is not aware of.” (JS Matt 48, 53)
- The Sign of the Son of Man in heaven will be seen by all. (JS Matthew 1:36)
We do not yet know what this “Sign of the Son of Man” shall constitute. But, it will probably be many signs, each of which can be individually rationalized away, the inspired understanding of the aggregate however will be an undeniable “sign” to the Elect. D&C 45:38-45 informs us that there shall be many signs and wonders in the heavens and in the earth: blood, fire, vapors of smoke, sun darkened, moon turned into blood, stars fall from heaven, and the remnant of the Jews gathered to Jerusalem.
Elder McConkie gave his opinion thus:
“Signs follow those who believe; signs are for people who have faith; signs reveal the [hidden] dealings of the Lord to those who treasure up his word. From the standpoint of the disciples, sitting with Jesus on Olivet, surely railroads and airplanes, radio and television, and satellites orbiting the earth would be signs and wonders on earth and in heaven. Vapors of smoke spray forth when atomic bombs are exploded; blood and fire are descriptive of modern warfare; and the sun, moon, and stars will yet speak forth their messages. When “the earth shall tremble and reel to and fro as a drunken man” (D&C 88:87) and “shall remove out of her place” (Isa. 13:10-13); when “the islands shall become one land” (D&C 133:23) and the whole face of the earth be changed, as a new heaven and a new earth is born, it will seem as though the very stars in the sidereal heavens are hurling themselves out of their places. These are signs that have been, signs that are, and signs that will yet herald the coming of the Promised One.” (McConkie, Mortal Messiah, v. 3, p. 450, bracketed word to correct typo “hide to hidden”)
- Then shall Jesus Christ be seen coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (JS Matthew 1:36) “He shall come out of the east, shining unto the west, covering the whole earth.” (JS Matthew 1:26). “I saw heaven opened . . . King of Kings and Lord of Lords. (Revelation 19: 11-15)
- The Morning of the First Resurrection. (Resurrection of the Just, or Celestial) (Revelation 14:12-13; Mosiah 15:20-23; Mosiah 16:8-13)Those who are dead “in Jesus” will God bring with him in the clouds of heaven (Titus 4:13-14). “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” (Titus 3:17). “We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed . . . at the last trump . . . and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” (1 Cor. 15:51-52) These have entered into their exaltation . . sit upon thrones, and are not angels, but gods.” (D&C 132:29, 37) (Also: Matthew 27:53; 1 Corinthians 15:23-44; D&C 29: 12-14; 43:17-18; 63:20, 49-53; 101:35; 88:94-98)
- The Resurrection of the Unjust (Terrestrial). “And after this another angel shall sound, which is the second trump; and then cometh the redemption of those who are Christ’s at his coming, who have received their part in that prison which is prepared for them, that they might receive the gospel and be judged according to men in the flesh.” (D&C 88:99-102)
- The end of the wicked. After the Celestial and Terrestrial have been safely lifted off of the earth and resurrected, “then shall the arm of the Lord fall upon the nations.” (D&C 45:16-48) They shall be cut off. (JS Matthew 1:55). Babylon falls . . . (Revelation 17 & 18) “Every corruptible thing, both of man, or of the beasts of the field, or of the fowls of the heavens, or of the fish of the sea, that dwells upon all the face of the earth, shall be consumed; and also that of element shall melt with fervent heat.” (D&C 101:24-25; also Zephaniah 1:2-18 Zephaniah 2:1-3; Zephaniah 3:8, JST 1 Cor. 3:11-15; D&C 64:23, Malachi 3:13-18; Malachi 4:1; JS-History 1:37; D&C 64:24-25; D&C 29:8-11)
- “But, the end of the earth is not yet, but by and by.” (JS Matthew 1:55)
Next on the Un-Blog “The Millennium”
© January 2012, John M. Pontius, all rights reserved. Non-commercial reproduction permitted.