Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Millennial Peace

                    Many people look forward to the Millennium, the thousand years of peace, love, and joy that will be ushered in at the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.  We can better understand what it will be like to live on earth during the Millennium by studying the scriptures and listening to prophets.

                    Only righteous people will be living on earth when the Millennium begins because the wicked will be destroyed at the time that Christ comes.  The righteous are those people who have lived virtuous and honest lives and will inherit either the terrestrial or the celestial kingdoms.

                    Mortals will live on the earth during the Millennium and will continue to have children just as we do now (see Doctrine and Covenants 45:58).  According to Joseph Smith, immortal beings will visit the earth frequently to help with the government and other work.  (See Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 268.)  All mortals will continue to have their agency and will be free to continue to practice their choice of religions and ideas for a time; however, everyone will eventually come to the realization that Jesus Christ is the Savior.

                    Jesus Christ will “reign personally upon the earth” during the Millennium (Articles of Faith 1:10).  According to the Prophet Joseph Smith, Jesus Christ will “reign over the Saints and come down and instruct” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church:  Joseph Smith [2007], 258).

                    Two great works will be done during the Millennium by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  These are temple work and missionary work.  Missionary work will involve teaching the gospel with great power to all people.  According to Jeremiah 31:34, the time will come when it will no longer be necessary to teach the first principles of the gospel because “they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord.”

                    Temple work will be accomplished to make sure that everyone has the necessary ordinances for exaltation.  The necessary ordinances includes baptism by immersion, the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, the endowment, temple marriage, and the sealing together of family units.  Because many people have died without receiving these saving ordinances, people on earth must perform these ordinances for them.  Even though this work is being currently done in the temples, there is too much work to complete it before Christ comes; therefore, it will be done during the Millennium.  Mortals will be assisted in this work by resurrected beings.  Mistakes made in research by mortals will be corrected by immortals that will also help find the necessary information to complete the records.  (See Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, comp. Bruce R. McConkie, 3 vols [1954-56], 2:167, 251-252.)

                    Life will be different during the Millennium than what we know on earth now.  According to the Prophet Joseph Smith, “the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory” during the Millennium (Articles of Faith 1:10).  Also, Satan will be bound during the Millennium, and he will no longer have power to tempt mortals (see Doctrine and Covenants 101:28).  According to Doctrine and Covenants 45:58, the “children shall grow up without sin unto salvation.”  Satan will have no power over the hearts of the people “because of the righteousness of [the Lord’s] people.”  In fact, Satan will be "bound" for “many years” because the people will “dwell in righteousness, and the Holy One of Israel reigneth” (1 Nephi 22:26).

                    True peace will reign on earth because the people will live in peace and harmony together and will no longer have wars.  In fact, the tools and equipment for making war will have other useful purposes.  “They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks:  nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Isaiah 2:4; see also Isaiah 11:6-7; Doctrine and Covenants 101:26).

                    There will no longer be death on the earth.  When mortals reach old age, they will not die, but they will be changed from their mortal condition to an immortal condition in “the twinkling of an eye.”  (See Doctrine and Covenants 63:51; 101:29-31.)

                    The government during the Millennium will be righteous because the Lord will “reign personally upon the earth” (Article of Faith 1:10).  President John Taylor taught, “The Lord will be king over all the earth, and all mankind literally under his sovereignty, and every nation under the heavens will have to acknowledge his authority, and bow to his scepter.  Those who serve him in righteousness will have communications with God, and with Jesus; will have the ministering of angels, and will know the past, the present, and the future; and other people, who may not yield full obedience to his laws, nor be fully instructed in his covenants, will, nevertheless, have to yield full obedience to his government.  For it will be the reign of God upon the earth, and he will enforce his laws, and command that obedience from the nations of the world which is legitimately his right” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church:  John Taylor [2001], 225).

                    Even though all truths have not yet been revealed to us, all things will be revealed during the Millennium.  We know this because the Lord said that He will “reveal all things – things which have passed, and hidden things which no man knew, things of the earth, by which it was made, and the purpose and the end thereof – things most precious, things that are above, and things that are beneath, things that are in the earth, and upon the earth, and in heaven” (Doctrine and Covenants 101:32-34).

                    Life will continue in many ways as it is at the present time with the exception that everything will be done in righteousness.  Mortals will continue to eat, drink, and wear clothing according to Brigham Young.  (See Teachings of Presidents of the Church:  Brigham Young [1997], 333.)  We also know from Isaiah 65:21 that people will continue to build houses as well as plant and harvest crops.

                    When the Millennium ends, Satan will again be set free but only for a short period of time.  Satan will gather as many people as he can convince to turn away from Heavenly Father.  Satan and his army will do battle with Michael (Adam) and the hosts of heaven.  Following this final battle for the souls of men, Satan and all his followers will be cast into outer darkness forever.  Then the earth will become a celestial kingdom.  (See Doctrine and Covenants 29:22-29; 88:17-20, 110-115.)

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