The chiliast, one who believes in a second coming of Christ that will usher in a millennial reign, has special challenges in reading signs. First, he is urged to notice lest he be caught unawares. Second, he must be aware of how many false readings and alarms there have been in bygone days, even by the faithful. For instance, has any age had more "wonders in the sky" than ours, with satellites and journeys to the moon? Has any generation seen such ominous "vapors of smoke" as ours with its mushroom clouds over the pathetic pyres of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Yet there is "more to come." Our task is to react and to notice without overreacting, to let life go forward without slipping into the heedlessness of those in the days of Noah. It has been asked, and well it might be, how many of us would have jeered, or at least been privately amused, by the sight of Noah building his ark. Presumably, the laughter and the heedlessness continued until it began to rain — and kept raining! How wet some people must have been before Noah's ark suddenly seemed the only sane act in an insane, bewildering situation! To ponder signs without becoming paranoid, to be aware without franticallymatching current events with expectations, using energy that should be spent in other ways—these are our tasks.
Neal A. Maxwell, For the Power is in Them, p. 20
"I promise you tonight in the name of the Lord whose servant I am that God will always protect and care for his people. We will have our difficulties the way every generation and people have had difficulties.... But with the gospel of Jesus Christ you have every hope and promise and reassurance. The Lord has power over his Saints and will always prepare places of peace, defense, and safety for his people. When we have faith in God we can hope for a better world-for us personally and for all mankind."
Howard W. Hunter "Teachings of Howard W. Hunter", p. 201-202
"Moreover, Latter-day Saints need to remember that we who live now are being called upon to work out our salvation in a special time of intense and immense challenges—the last portion of the dispensation of the fulness of times during which great tribulation will occur, the elect will almost be deceived, and unrighteous people will be living much as they were in the days of Noah. It will be a time of polarization...
"Therefore, though we have rightly applauded our ancestors for their spiritual achievements (and do not and must not discount them now), those of us who prevail today will have done no small thing. The special spirits who have been reserved to live in this time of challenges and who overcome will one day be praised for their stamina by those who pulled handcarts."
Neal A. Maxwell, "Notwithstanding My Weakness", p.17-18
"Holy men and holy women stand in holy places, and these holy places include our temples, our chapels, our homes, and the stakes of Zion, which are, as the Lord declares, 'for a defense, and for a refuge from the storm, and from wrath when it shall be poured out without mixture upon the whole earth.'"
Ezra Taft Benson, BYU, Fireside and Devotional Speeches, 1981, p. 68
"Church Members may dedicate their homes as sacred edifices where the Holy Spirit can reside and where family members can worship, find safety from the world, grow spiritually, and prepare for eternal family relationships…Unlike Church buildings, homes are not consecrated to the Lord. To dedicate a home a family might gather and offer a prayer that would include the elements mentioned above or other words as the Spirit directs."
Melchizedek Priesthood Leadership Handbook, p. 14
ow can we make our homes a "holy place." (posters, music, reading material, videos, pictures etc.—keep that which is uplifting- eliminate anything that lets the power of Satan into your home)
"I think we stand in this dispensation like the righteous in the days of the cities of the plains when perhaps the Lord might spare the wicked, some of them, because of the righteous.
"That places upon us a great and significant burden. That's why we are here, to make of ourselves more effective instruments, truer warriors under the direction of the Almighty to save His sons and daughters from those things which will destroy them in time and for eternity unless they turn their lives around."
President Gordon B. Hinckley - Eugene, Oregon, Regional Conf. Priesthood Leadership Mtg., Sept. 14, 1996
"I testify that it is time for every man to set in order his own house both temporally and spiritually..."
President Ezra Taft Benson, "I Testify" - Oct. Gen. Conf. 1988
"It is extremely important for you to believe in yourselves, not only for what you are now, but for what you have the power to become. Trust in the Lord as He leads you along. He has things for you to do that you won't know about now, but that will unfold later.
"If you stay close to Him, you will have some great adventures. You will live in a time when instead of just talking about prophecies that will sometime be fulfilled, many of them will actually be fulfilled. The Lord will unfold your future bit by bit."
Elder Neal A. Maxwell
"We surely have been warned and forewarned about our time, a period in which the compression of challenges may make a year seem like a decade. Members will be cleverly mocked and scorned by those in the "great and spacious building," representing the pride of the world. No matter, for ere long, He who was raised on the third day will raze that spacious but third-class hotel!"
Neal A. Maxwell, "Overcometh...Even As I Also Overcame", CR April 1987
"We are living in a time when the best of things are on the earth...and the worst of things. Are we taking advantage of the best of things...and staying away from the worst of things?"
"We know the prophecies of the future. We know the final outcome. We know the world collectively will not repent, and, consequently, the last days will be filled with much pain and suffering. Therefore, we could throw up our hands and do nothing but pray for the end to come so the millennial reign could begin. To do so would forfeit our right to participate in the grand event we are all awaiting. We must all become players in the winding-up scene, not spectators. We must do all we can to prevent calamities and then do everything possible to assist and comfort the victims of tragedies that do occur."
"A Thousand Times" Bishop Glenn L. Pace - General Conference, October 1990
"Teenagers also sometimes think, 'What's the use? The world will soon be blown all apart and come to an end.' That feeling comes from fear, not from faith. No one knows the hour or the day (see D&C 49:7), but the end cannot come until all of the purposes of the Lord are fulfilled. Everything that I have learned from the revelations and from life convinces me that there is time and to spare for you to carefully prepare for a long life."
Boyd K. Packer - Ensign, May 1989 (April Conference) page 59
"The battle to bring souls unto Christ began in the premortal world with the war in heaven (see Revelation 12:7). That same battle continues today in the conflict between right and wrong and between the gospel and false principles. The members of the Church hold a front-line position in the contest for the souls of men. The missionaries are on the battlefield fighting with the sword of truth to carry the glorious message of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the peoples of the earth. No war has ever been free of risk. The prophecies of the last days lead me to believe that the intensity of the battle for the souls of men will increase and the risks will become greater as we draw closer to the second coming of the Lord."
"Duties, Rewards, And Risks" Elder M. Russell Ballard - General Conference, October 1989
"My message to you today, my brothers and sisters, is simply this: the Lord is in control. He knows the end from the beginning. He has given us adequate instruction that, if followed, will see us safely through any crisis. His purposes will be fulfilled, and someday we will understand the eternal reasons for all of these events. Therefore, today we must be careful not to overreact, nor should we be caught up in extreme preparations, but what we must do is keep the commandments of God and never lose hope!"
"The Joy Of Hope Fulfilled" Elder M. Russell Ballard - General Conference, October 1992
"Preparing ourselves and our families for the challenges of the coming years will require us to replace fear with faith. We must be able to overcome the fear of enemies who oppose and threaten us. The Lord has said, 'Fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail' (D&C 6:34)."
"Duties, Rewards, And Risks" Elder M. Russell Ballard - General Conference, October 1989
"We have a responsibility of bearing off His kingdom, building up His Church, being a light to the world, and getting organized in a way that we will be a refuge from the storm. I don't mean rain or thunder. I mean the storm of sin that will be destructive of human life and government: 'For a defense, and for a refuge from the storm, and from wrath when it shall be poured out without mixture upon the whole earth' (D&C 115:6). And some of that wrath is going to be poured out upon the heads of the Latter-day Saints who have the gospel, but who refuse to live it and to maintain the standards which the Lord has provided us. I hope the number will be few."
Ezra Taft Benson, Grantsville Utah Stake Conference, 1 September 1974; see TETB p. 341)
"These really are our days, and we can prevail and overcome, even in the midst of trends that are very disturbing. If we are faithful the day will come when those deserving pioneers and ancestors, whom we rightly praise for having overcome the adversities in their wilderness trek, will praise today's faithful for having made their way successfully through a desert of despair and for having passed through a cultural wilderness, while still keeping the faith.
"We can make of these days ahead 'days never to be forgotten' in the history of the Church. Ours can be 'a voice of gladness' even amid the stern but foreseen days of 'gloominess,' while being 'alive in Christ' in the living Church. (See Joseph Smith-History 1, footnote to verse 71; D&C 128:19; 2 Nephi 25:25.)"
Neal A. Maxwell, If Thou Endure It Well, pp. 28-29
"The Lord is in control. He knows the end from the beginning. He has given us adequate instruction that, if followed, will see us safely through any crisis. His purposes will be fulfilled, and someday we will understand the eternal reasons for all of these events."
M. Russell Ballard, The Friend, Sept 1995, p. 1, adapted from October 1992 Conference Report.
"The gap between what is popular and what is righteous is widening."
President James E. Faust - October 2003)
Today's World is:
Lewd, Crude, Rude, and Nude
"Four matters are indisputable to Latter-day Saints: (1) The Savior will return to the earth in power and great glory to reign personally during a millennium of righteousness and peace. (2) At the time of His coming there will be a destruction of the wicked and a resurrection of the righteous. (3) No one knows the time of His coming, but (4) the faithful are taught to study the signs of it and to be prepared for it."
Dallin H. Oaks, "Preparation for the Second Coming," Ensign, May 2004, 7
"Somehow, among all who have walked the earth, we have been brought forth in this unique and remarkable season. Be grateful, and above all be faithful."
President Gordon B. Hinckley, Ensign, May 2004
"The fact that the Lord Almighty will take care of his people during these latter days of stress and trial became fixed in my mind very early. The Lord has said concerning the latter days in the parable of the ten virgins: 'For they that are wise and have received the truth, and have taken the Holy Spirit for their guide, and have not been deceived . shall not be hewn down' (D&C 45:57). I think we are not safe because we say we intend to do what's right. I think the people who are safe are those who have taken the Holy Spirit for their guide and have not been deceived. To have the Holy Spirit with us as the Lord speaks of it here is to be guided by revelation from heaven. I know that such guidance can be had."
Marion G. Romney, Ensign, July 1981, 2