“And then shall the heathen nations be redeemed”

Frank M. Keele

By Frank M. Keele

In the previous blog (“The first shall be last and the last shall be first”) we put forth an expanded view of the order of ministering among the Jews, the Gentiles, and scattered Israel in the meridian of time.

Based upon this “expanded view”, we also commented briefly on what to expect as this process is reversed and played out here in the fullness of times, concluding with the Lord’s appearance to the Jews as their Messiah.

However, when we look at this “first last, last first” doctrine in the broader context, we find that it is a prelude to the blessings of the gospel being extended beyond the house of Israel. We go to Doctrine and Covenants section 45 and read:

42 And before the day of the Lord shall come, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon be turned into blood, and the stars fall from heaven.

43 And the remnant shall be gathered unto this place;

44 And then they shall look for me, and, behold, I will come; and they shall see me in the clouds of heaven, clothed with power and great glory; with all the holy angels; and he that watches not for me shall be cut off…

47 Then shall the arm of the Lord fall upon the nations.

48 And then shall the Lord set his foot upon this mount, and it shall cleave in twain, and the earth shall tremble, and reel to and fro, and the heavens also shall shake.

49 And the Lord shall utter his voice, and all the ends of the earth shall hear it; and the nations of the earth shall mourn, and they that have laughed shall see their folly.

50 And calamity shall cover the mocker, and the scorner shall be consumed; and they that have watched for iniquity shall be hewn down and cast into the fire.

51 And then shall the Jews look upon me and say: What are these wounds in thine hands and in thy feet?

52 Then shall they know that I am the Lord; for I will say unto them: These wounds are the wounds with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. I am he who was lifted up. I am Jesus that was crucified. I am the Son of God.

53 And then shall they weep because of their iniquities; then shall they lament because they persecuted their king.

54 AND THEN SHALL THE HEATHEN NATIONS BE REDEEMED, and they that knew no law shall have part in the first resurrection; and it shall be tolerable for them.

So, the Lord’s appearance to the Jews as their long-awaited Messiah also appears to trigger yet another round of ministering, this time among the heathen nations. When the events described in the above passage unfold and Gog’s army of 200 million are defeated, it will have a profound impact upon those of the heathen nations, we go to Ezekiel 38 and read:

16 And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes…

23 Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the Lord.

With the coming of Christ to the Jews and the realization among the heathen nations that Jesus Christ is in fact God, a whole new round of ministering will commence. From Doctrine and Covenants section 90 and read:

9 That through your administration… the word may go forth unto the ends of the earth, unto the Gentiles first, and then, behold, and lo, they shall turn unto the Jews.

10 And then cometh the day when the arm of the Lord shall be revealed in power in convincing the nations, the heathen nations, the house of Joseph, of the gospel of their salvation.

11 For it shall come to pass in that day, that every man shall hear the fulness of the gospel in his own tongue, and in his own language, through those who are ordained unto this power, by the administration of the Comforter, shed forth upon them for the revelation of Jesus Christ.

So, “when the arm of the Lord shall be revealed in power (at Armageddon) in convincing the nations, the heathen nations… of the gospel of their salvation… every man shall hear the fulness of the gospel in his own tongue, and in his own language, through those who are ordained unto this power”.

Now, knowing that all this preaching among the Jews and the heathen nations shall take place after the Lord appears to the Jews as their Messiah, which is His second appearance, we should surely abandon any notion that the Lord’s second coming will be delayed until the gospel is preached in all nations. From Joseph Smith Matthew we read:

31 And again, this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come, or the destruction of the wicked;

Although the end (of the telestial world) and “the destruction of the wicked” are associated with the second coming, to assume that the Lord’s coming will be delayed until after the gospel “shall be preached in all the world” is clearly an erroneous assumption.

And what is also quite clear is that the said “end” shall not come, nor shall the final “destruction of the wicked” unfold until the ministering among the Jews and the heathen nations is complete… for only then shall “this Gospel of the Kingdom” have been “preached in all the world”!

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