Today is April 6th, 2017. Got up early and headed up for a hike with a friend. It was a warm, beautiful spring morning. The water was pretty cold though.
April 6 is a significant date in LDS Church History. The Prophet Joseph Smith was divinely authorized to reestablish the Church of Christ on this day. Years later The Church of Christ that was organized by Joseph Smith Jr became known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.Also on this date in 1877, the St. George Temple was dedicated. The St. George Temple was the first temple the Saints built in Utah and the first to remain in continuous operation. In 1893, the Salt Lake Temple was dedicated on April 6th. And finally on April 6th, 2000 the Temple near the sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York was dedicated. (Some have also considered this date to be the anniversary of the Lord's birth as well.)
Sidenote: I received an email summary today which I was asked to post on this blog.
For thus it behooveth the Father that it should come forth from the Gentiles, that he may show forth his power unto the Gentiles, for this cause that the Gentiles, if they will not harden their hearts, that they may repent and come unto me and be baptized in my name and know of the true points of my doctrine, that they may be numbered among my people, O house of Israel; And when these things come to pass that thy seed shall begin to know these things—it shall be a sign unto them, that they may know that the work of the Father hath already commenced unto the fulfilling of the covenant which he hath made unto the people who are of the house of Israel.
3 NEPHI 21:6-7
STATUS: Currently there is no covenant people on the earth capable of fulfilling the prophecies found in scripture. (Teachings Post, pg. 1). “There is not a single church body congregation, or assembly, anywhere, that has published and is claiming as their body of governing scriptural material a set of scriptures which include the Lectures on Faith, fully print the “fullness of scriptures” containing every revision Joseph made to the Bible, faithfully reproduces the original revelations in their original words…but there is a draft available for your review.” (St. George 27:20).
INVITATION: Today is our opportunity to repent and return-by gathering, saying, and doing, what was offered and expected when the Restoration began through Joseph Smith. (Inquiry and Response, pg. 1). “Joseph Smith brought forth words that have never been preserved or accepted.” (St. George 47:16). We must demonstrate the respect, penitence and labor necessary to recover what was lost. (Inquiry and Response, pg. 1). All who intend to receive the light, (D&C 93) and come out of condemnation, (D&84) must not treat lightly what the Lord has offered, but instead “repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon and the former commandments” which God has given. (Scripture, Prophecy and Covenant, pg. 4). The Fullness of the Scriptures, which Joseph Smith said without the church would yet fail, are now available. (St. George Talk, 15:15).
BOOK OF MORMON: The Book of Mormon has been provided to convince both Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ. It was also “entrusted to the gentiles for the purpose of gathering the remnant and establishing Zion.” (Scripture, Prophecy and Covenant, pg. 6).
RESTORATION SCRIPTURES: Similar to how the Book of Mormon exists as an everlasting covenant, the Restoration Scriptures also provide an opportunity to reclaim blessings and lay hold on a covenant. (Teachings Post, pg. 1). “When it comes to scripture, corruption happens, and each new dispensation is responsible for fixing the cannon of scripture, to reclaim truths, to correct errors, and to adopt guiding principles applicable to their day.” (St. George 36:07). The Restoration Scriptures are a restatement of what the Lord once offered and what He now offers and instructs. (Teachings Post, pg. 2). The Restoration scriptures are a remedy to past deficiencies. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 10).
GENTILES: According to scripture the Lord plans to use a restoration through the Gentiles to “gather again” the remnant of Israel. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 2). The covenant associated with this work must first be offered to and accepted by the Gentiles, so that a few who repent and return may be numbered among the remnant of God’s people and assist in establishing the New Jerusalem. (Teachings Post, pg. 2). “This (The Restoration Scriptures/Covenant) is necessary for the Gentiles to claim they have accepted a covenant and a law.” (St. George 37:30).
COVENANT PEOPLE: If successful repentance occurs, including being able to obtain accurate language and revelation, then the Lord may provide us with His covenant language. (Inquiry and Response, pg. 1). Those who accept the covenants offered by God will become part of the covenant people of God, be numbered among the seed of the Remnant, and inherit this land. These are they whom God will protect. (Teachings, pg. 3, Scripture, Prophecy and Covenant pg. 11).
THE FEW: Those few who receive Christ and His Covenant will be armed with righteousness and the power of God to guide them. In Him, they will be able to seek for and establish Zion. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 9). According to 1 Nephi 4, “blessed are they who shall seek to bring forth my Zion at that day, for they shall have the gift and power of the Holy Ghost. And if they endure unto the end, they shall be lifted up at the last day and shall be saved in the everlasting kingdom of the Lamb.”
THE NEW JERUSALEM: “Zion will include people who are willing to receive revelations from God and obey Commandments.” (St. George 38:03). After acceptance by the people, and approval from the Lord, if the people abide the covenant, the Lord will establish a New Jerusalem as a land of peace and city of refuge. These people will be the only ones not at war with one another as the final chapter unfolds. (D&C 45: 65-71).
GATHERING THE REMNANT: Once the covenant is personally accepted, it can be offered by the recipient to other Christians throughout the world. (missionary work). (Teachings Post, pg. 2). “Accepting the covenant offered in our day includes the obligation and right to gather scattered remnants of Israel…and the right and obligation to assist in building the New Jerusalem.” (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 13).
ZION UNITY: Any individual can commune with God. But covenants to bring Zion require a people to be restored again by covenant as God’s people. “All of them must unite in accepting a law, a standard, the covenant for those who will help establish the New Jerusalem.” “They must be gathered. Before they gather they must have one heart and one mind which requires them to receive and act on a covenant with the Lord; not only to say, but to do what has been asked of them.” (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenants, pg. 14).
ZION EQUALITY: Zion will involve a people unified into an equal body without hierarchy. There will be one heart, one mind, and no poor among them. All are in need of repenting into this Zion state. (Inquiry and Response, pg. 2). Equality in Zion is unlikely if we do not treat one another as equals along the way. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant pg. 15).
ACCEPTANCE BY THE PEOPLE: In September of 2017, a finalized version of the Restoration Scriptures will be offered for approval as a law and covenant. In addition to possibly fulfilling the covenant initially offered by Christ, ratification by the Saints, and approval from the Lord, could also result in protection from coming judgments. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Scripture, pg. 11).
ACCEPTANCE FROM THE LORD: Men cannot make covenants with God. God offers a covenant and mankind accepts or rejects. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 14). The Restoration Scriptures and associated Covenant will need to be approved and accepted by the Lord. (Teachings Post, pg. 3). If we as Gentiles accept the covenant, and “if a people, adopt a covenant, and receive what has been restored, the clock will begin to tick.” (St. George 48:31).
INDIVIDUAL and COLLECTIVE CHOICE: All are free to accept or reject the covenant offering. (Teachings Post, pg. 3). Just as the Gentiles were free to accept or reject the covenant offering at the time of Joseph, we too today are free to accept or reject the Restoration Scriptures and associated covenant. (Scripture, Prophecy, and Covenant, pg. 3, 8, 9,16).
St. George Conference Talk, Things that keep you up at night. 3-19-17.