From Fellowship Conference 20-Sept-2015 Big Cottonwood Canyon Transcript:
Question: I’ve been hearing of some other groups and even some of the people in the group I meet with they talk about receiving revelations that it’s time to flee Babylon and prepare a place of refuge. So people are actually leaving their jobs, selling their homes, buying up remote properties and deciding to live together and live the law of consecration. As I’ve prayed and fasted about this I’ve felt concerned about that, I don’t know we’re anywhere near that? So the question is “Does the Lord actually want us to do something physically to prepare or is it all spiritual preparation at this point? Are we anywhere near the law of consecration?
Answer: I don’t think it is useful for people to argue over the revelations that they have received in contrast to the revelations anyone else has received. I think that we should give allowances for the possibility that someone has received for themselves some communication that for themselves they ought to act on. Therefore, I do not want to be dismissive of someone’s revelation that says they ought to be doing something. But, I was reading out loud to my wife’s amusement a letter written in 1841 by Wilford Woodruff in England sent back to the saints in Nauvoo, about how obvious it was that were right then at the end of all time. The poverty in England he saw, the abuse of people, the great pollutions on the land, and all of the signs, the cholera, the earthquakes, it was really clear the earth was in the final distress, and that God was coming soon. The plagues had been opened, the angels were then released to harvest the world, and the end was upon them. That was, I think it was in March edition of the Times and Seasons for 1841. The apostle Paul wrote a New Testament letter about the times of distress are upon us. Everyone in every generation sees that.
In order for the entire earth not to be smitten and utterly wasted at the Lord’s return it will be necessary for there to be a Zion. It’s almost a cause and effect. You have to have the reestablishment of what was in the beginning of the world in the end of the world also. That was a prophecy of Adam, he made it in the valley of Adam-ondi- Ahman. Enoch was the one the preserved Adam’s prophecy, so it appears in the Enoch portion of the Book of Moses. That same priesthood which was in the beginning of the world shall at the end of the world be also.
It is not done merely by laying hands on someone’s head and inciting an incantation. It will not be done by someone declaring, “you are senior chief, apostolic, high and holy pontificate of the 9th order,” or some such nonsense. It’s not that, it’s not that at all.
It will be reestablishing something about which we know very, very little. That has to occur only within an environment that has been insulated from the world and accepted by God. It has to be physically accepted by the Lord. That edifice has to be located in a place approved by the Lord. We don’t know the place as yet. We don’t have the right to proceed. All of this must occur before the invitation for the Lord’s return is extended. Because God is not going to come to a planet that He utterly wastes at His coming. An invitation has to precede the return of our Lord. That invitation needs to be done in His way, at a place of His choosing, in a manner that He ordains, that occurs according to His will. It will be established as a consequence of Him returning what was once here, back to the earth again.
People are wildly enthusiastic about a lot of things and I don’t deny the possibility that their enthusiasm can be based upon something that is authentic and God talking to them. But as for wrapping up of the creation and the culmination of the ages, God’s direct involvement in that and the impressive nature of how that will roll forward, will not be some people deciding to flee and go farm somewhere. It’s going to be a different kind of enterprise, culminating in a city of righteousness and a people of righteousness, and in that sense righteousness will include a great deal of knowledge. The glory of God is intelligence or in other words light and truth. Knowledge and redemption all of that go together.
I don’t talk about any of the revelations or visitations I’ve received except to say that they have happened. I will tell you, they have happened. The Lord in His wisdom does not require me to speak of them. I did a little post on Nephi and the Lord constraining him to remain silent about some things, and how smart I thought that was in the long run. The Lord in His wisdom has asked that I talk using the scriptures and the things put on the ground by Joseph Smith and not anything else. I think that is an important thing to do.
Until we have first remembered and straightened out what it was that came to us through Joseph, we have no business going out and and starting another experiment. I have used this analogy and some of you have heard it and I apologize to those that have heard it, but I’m going to use it again. Edison tried iron, he tried copper, he tried aluminum, he tried a number of elements all of which failed. Until he finally used carbon as the filament and then he got light.
Joseph Smith proceeded with the restoration as a come-as-you-are party. He believed that with the right kind of preaching he could take any people, convert them and turn them in to Zion. There was some reason to think it may be a possibility, because of what learn about with Melchizedek in the book of Mosiah. Melchizedek’s preaching resulted in people repenting from their wickedness and becoming righteous. So it’s not an irrational thought, not an unscriptural thought, for Joseph to have entertained. My conclusion however is that there is no reason to try iron if Edison tried it and it didn’t work and there’s no reason to try copper if Edison tried it and it didn’t work. There is no reason to expect that you can take people and gather them and then try to produce Zion. It makes a whole lot more sense, as the scriptures seem to indicate, that first people are taught repentance and then some few repent then are gathered, one of city, two of a family. They are gathered by those angels to whom the keys are entrusted to do the gathering. Then you put them together.
We know what Joseph tried to do failed. He did not produce Zion.
Every dispensation of the Gospel is the "last Dispensation" until it fails. Then another is sent and it is the "last" until it fails. This will continue for so long as man continues to fail. God is in no hurry. Apparently we are not either.