When you read the words.. ‘the day cometh’... it is referring to a future event that will soon occur. One of the most well known scriptures that contains these words is Malachi 4:1. It says, “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.”
Keep that in mind that the words, "the day cometh" is referring to a future event when you read the first Section of the Doctrine and Covenants 1: 14-16.
“…and the day cometh that they who will not hear the voice of the Lord… shall be cut off from among the people; For they have strayed from mine ordinances, and have broken mine everlasting covenant; They seek not the Lord to establish his righteousness, but every man walketh in his own way, and after the image of his own god, whose image is in the likeness of the world, and whose substance is that of an idol, which waxeth old and shall perish in Babylon, even Babylon the great, which shall fall.”
These are the Lord’s words speaking through His prophet, Joseph Smith. This is to happen AFTER the restoration of the Gospel. The Lord is speaking about a future event, that “a day cometh”, when those who will not hear the voice of the Lord and seek not the Lord to establish His righteousness, will build up an image that is in the likeness of the world, and whose substance is that of an idol.. and will stray from the ordinances and break the everlasting covenant.
How is this possible? Is this still a future event or has this happened, or happening?
Elder Joseph Fielding Smith, a member of the Council of the 12 and Church Historian who later became the tenth President of the Church wrote a series of articles entitled “Governments and Laws in General: The Kingdom of God”. These articles were published in the Church News published in the Deseret News in 1936. The below quote appeared in the 20th series on pg 7 in the Deseret News on Saturday, October 17th, 1936.
“Are we not too much inclined to blame the generations that are past for the breaking of the new and everlasting covenant, and to think it is because of the great apostasy which followed the ministry of the Apostles in primitive times, that these troubles are coming upon the earth? Perhaps we should wake up to the realization that it is because of the breaking of covenants, especially the new and everlasting covenant, which is the fullness of the Gospel as it has been revealed, that the world is to be consumed by fire and few men left. Since this punishment is to come at the time of the cleansing of the earth when Christ comes again, should not Latter-day Saints take heed unto themselves? We have been given the new and everlasting covenant, and many among us have broken it, and many are now breaking it; therefore all who are guilty of this offense will aid in bringing to pass this destruction in which they will find themselves swept from the earth when the great and dreadful day of the Lord shall come.”
The second commandment is: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. What is a graven image?.. What constitutes whose substance is that of an idol? Can we still make statues as long as it isn’t a golden calf and not worship it?
The LDS Public Affairs has recently released the following 6 minute video of the construction of the new Rome, Italy Temple. The video describes the one very unique features that will be part of the Rome Temple Grounds, marble statues of Jesus Christ and all of the Twelve Apostles. These same exact statues are found in the Church of Our Lady, in Denmark. Probably the most famous and well known statues of the 12 apostles and Jesus Christ adorn the Vatican in Rome. I find it interesting that we also want to adorn the Rome Temple with similar marble statues as well. If you watch the video though, maybe we have found a loophole to the 2nd commandment, since it won’t be "us", but instead it will be computer technology that will be doing most of the “graving” of the statues from the images found in the National Church in Copenhagen.