Eschatology

The Book of Mormon warns us of what happens when more people choose evil over good: the judgment of God is upon them. Helaman 5:1-

For as their laws and their governments were established by the voice of the people, and they who chose evil were more numerous than they who chose good, therefore they were ripening for destruction, for the laws had become corrupted.

I’ve never been much of a believer in the end times. But I’m starting to believe. We (white Americans) have sent a strong message to minorities, to LGBTQ people, to women, to Muslims. I’m sorry that all this privileged liberal talk did absolutely nothing to make your lives better. I’m sorry for the arrogant belief that of course a man like that could never be president. But now those rights and freedoms you had are at risk. The economy, that arm of flesh, is at risk. Climate change is a foregone conclusion. And now white nationalism reigns.

If we are getting closer to the end of things, followers of Christ need to stand together now more tightly than ever. We need to reassure and help and reach out more than ever. As the mountains tremble, our institutions tumble and the rocks melt with fervent heat, I want you to know that I love you and I won’t abandon you. God help us.

Comments

  1. Amen, Steve.

  2. God help us, indeed. You made me cry.

  3. I’m crying too.

  4. And all those white Americans thought it would come at the hand of Islam.

    God help us all. What have wrought?

  5. And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you: At that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my gospel, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, and shall be lifted up in the pride of their hearts above all nations, and above all the people of the whole earth, and shall be filled with all manner of lyings, and of deceits, and of mischiefs, and all manner of hypocrisy, and murders, and priestcrafts, and whoredoms, and of secret abominations; and if they shall do all those things, and shall reject the fulness of my gospel, behold, saith the Father, I will bring the fulness of my gospel from among them….

    Yea, I will suffer my people, O house of Israel, that they shall go through among them, and shall tread them down, and they shall be as salt that hath lost its savor, which is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of my people, O house of Israel.

    Verily, verily, I say unto you, thus hath the Father commanded me—that I should give unto this people this land for their inheritance. (3 Ne 16:10, 15, 16).

  6. Jonathan- you’re missing the point.

  7. All this and not a peep from our Prophet. Not a peep from SL. Feeling abandoned, in darkness.

  8. Aussie Mormon says:

    It’s 1:35am in SLC. It’s likely President Monson is asleep.

  9. I am stunned speechless by the outcome of this election, yet my mind is racing with all of the possible outcomes that will play out as a result of this bruising blow to my concept of the American identity. I would have been the first to tell anyone that we are a flawed country, but a good country that was working to overcome those flaws. . . but now. . . now I don’t know what to say.

    I suppose the best thing to say is nothing. I suppose that I should just take in the moment – in silence – to make sure that my feelings of sadness and stunned bewilderment are effectively catalyzed & that energy is channeled into the right course of action over the coming years.

    I take strength in associating with the BCC community, and I hope that these political outcomes do not fray the bonds of support that exist among the frequent bloggers, commentators & readers. I stand with those who come here seeking friendship, support, and love.

  10. Kristine N says:

    I pray that all he will do is enrich himself and his cronies at the expense of the American people. That I think we could suffer and come back from. I pray that this isn’t chapter 1 of Mormon. I pray that Donald Trump will surround himself with competent people and that he will listen to them.

  11. I keep thinking of Isaiah 5: wo unto them that call evil good and good evil. But I am also thinking of the eschatology of Isaiah 52: even thought we’ve sold ourselves for naught, there is still, somehow, redemption. Do we ever need it.

  12. The people of this country were … The American people didn’t…

    Hang on a minute; before you presume to speak for the American people–as opposed to, say, the electoral college–let me assure you that the narrative you present “mostly represents projection of your thoughts on others.”

  13. Seeing Trump win feels the same as when I, a woman, went to the temple for the first time. Both legitimize and institutionalize intense discrimination in way that I didn’t realize was possible. I imagine it might feel similar to a black person first reading of the priesthood ban or a gay person hearing of the Nov 5 policy.

    A Trump win has stirred up so many emotions in me that mirror heartbreaking experiences I’ve had with the Church. Seeing Utah support Trump has not helped. We Mormons have a lot of work to do.

  14. Interesting that conservatives used the same scriptures to predict doom and gloom when Bill and later Obama won. Country survived then and will now.

  15. “…followers of Christ need to stand together now more tightly than ever. We need to reassure and help and reach out more than ever.”

    This. I am searching for that peace that the spirit has brought me in the past during other times of trouble, and I think that it will be a result of losing myself in service to others that it will be found. If this be our end times, I want to face it standing arm in arm with my fellow Saints.

  16. This is not a helpful post. I was and am in tears over the results but we can and will do better. We are and are going to be stronger together.

  17. Not sure that we will be facing th end arm and arm with fellow saints. The fact that my former RS President presented to her community this man as her presidential choice, a pornographic playboy who brags about sexually groping women without their consent, who says, “blood was coming out of her wherever”, who lithe KKK cheers for, is no one I will be linking arms with. We have absolutely no moral authority when this has become our choice.

  18. Hillary was the worst candidate we’ve ever had in my lifetime for President.

    Again, you’re projecting. Clinton might be the worst candidate you have ever seen in your life, but that narrative is not one we share. Just FYI.

  19. “We are justified in being of good cheer for ultimate reasons, reasons to be distinguished, however, from proximate circumstances. If, for instance, our attitude towards life depends upon the praise of men, the level of interest rates, the outcome of a particular election or athletic contest, we are too much at the mercy of men and circumstance. … Instead, Jesus calls upon us to have a deliberate trust in God’s unfolding purposes, not only for all humankind but for us individually. And we are to be of good cheer in the unfolding process. … By developing our individual capacities, wisely exercising our agency, and trusting God–including when we feel forsaken and alone–then we can, said President [Brigham] Young, learn to be ‘righteous in the dark.” — Neal A. Maxwell

  20. Ojiisan, ironic that the misapplication of those verses played a role in their actual fulfillment.

  21. I’m going to be modding this thread pretty heavily. If you think that this is a thread for talking about politics, you’re wrong. This is a place to help each other. If you can’t do that, don’t participate

  22. Deborah Christensen says:

    I’ll be watching alot of you tube videos of kittens today. I’ve been doing my praying during the night every time I woke up.

  23. Sorry, just worried.

  24. This country survived Johnson and Nixon, Carter and Reagan, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. We may disagree about which of those presidents were disasters, but we can all agree that this country has survived disastrous presidencies.

    Is Trump even worse? Yeah, that’s a distinct possibility. And I’m concerned by the fact that institutional norms and the clear intent of the Constitution were being replaced by the raw exercise of power even before Trump came along (examples: routine use of the filibuster, treating the funding of the government like a hostage negotiation, refusing to seat a moderate and clearly qualified Supreme Court nominee just because he was nominated by a President of the other party). But this country is resilient–or at least that’s what I’m telling myself this morning.

  25. To the Steve who keeps getting modded – if you think you’re being a comfort, think again.

  26. Hopeful in Utah says:

    For those of us in Utah – it looks like Suzanne Harrison will defeat Lavar Christensen – the incumbent and sponsor of much of Utah’s legislation against homosexuals. There is hope.

    http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/utah-state-house-district-32

  27. From my wife, who is trying to comfort me this morning:
    Helaman 5:12 And now… remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.

    In the words of Julian of Norwich, “all shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well.”

    And meanwhile, we high step through the poop.

  28. Clark Goble says:

    Could also be a learning lesson that nominating widely disliked politicians isn’t a smart strategy.

  29. Something’s going on worldwide with conservatives. Brexit, Trump’s victory, Merkel’s pie in the face, Australia voting down SSM, etc. Good ole’ boys who work for a living are tired of the left’s telling them what to do and how to think about their own lives and resources. Healthy God fearing middle class folk are the most generous people in the world. Give them some breathing room and their charitable giving will increase then some.

    That said, as a conservative I couldn’t get myself to vote for Trump (I voting straight ticket republican on everything else on the ballot). But now that he’s in I’d like to think that maybe he’ll turn out to be like the Jaredite king Morianton, doing justice to the people but not to himself because of his whoredoms. Probably wishful thinking. But even so, I don’t think he’ll move us any faster toward the “consumption decreed” than Hillary would have.

  30. I’m a liberal Dem living in a swing-state (though maybe moving to Utah; weird) with a lot of family who voted Trump. In the spirit of the OP, I will offer my initial approach to stemming the end-times: honestly dialogue with those who voted for Trump and understand their hearts. What do they hope he will accomplish for them? How do they account for his horrible character? Don’t attack; don’t mock; just listen.

    I have serious worries about the next few years. As I’ve spoken with Trump voters, those worries have not ebbed, but my heart has begun to heal. There is still much common ground. And as long as that ground remains, we will avoid the apocalyptic environment in which every man retreats to his tribe and his heart is hardened against all others. Don’t worry about saving the country; focus on immediate relationships with friends and family. That is, and always has been, the heart of ‘We the People.’

    Plus, if things turn as out as I expect – bad, but not super horrible – then in 4 years Trump’s base will be disillusioned, the minorities will be energized and more numerous, and Elizabeth Warren will get a chance to right the ship.

  31. Stephen Fleming at 6.37 am

    Normally would be happy to discuss the veracity of that statement with you but I don’t think that was the intent of this post.

  32. I am stunned. I keep going through the five stages of grief–alternating between denial, anger, bargaining (maybe the election was hacked by the Russians and Hillary really won? Please…) I am not yet at acceptance but I am praying for peace. I keep trying to convince myself that voters chose Trump for his economic policy and not for his stance against minorities or his sexual harassment of women, but it is hard not to think that at least some of this election was motivated by racism and sexism. I wanted to raise my children in a better world than this, a world where love and respect for one another’s differences trumped fear. I guess I will have to wait another four years.

  33. I think this verse has been in play for well over two decades. I don’t think it’s mattered who was President or in Congress; we’ve been quite happy spending our time looking for someone to blame rather than trying to actually listen to each other.

    I’m sad for all of us, for the country, for the people, but most of all that I was not able to do enough to listen to those who were and are hurting; my brothers and sisters who feel they can only get relief by overpowering others rather than following the example of Christ.

  34. Hugs, Ojiisan.

  35. I’m scared. November (this election and last year’s POX) has me feeling that I have no home. I feel betrayed by my countrymen. I feel betrayed by my church. Where is my home? I’m scared that what I ALWAYS thought were deal breakers are easily dismissed/justified/politicted. I’m scared that this result signals to all the sexist, racist, and bigoted fears that people carry that now is the time to act on them. I’m scared that the success of this election will breed even more calculating and dangerous characters for the next go around.

    I thought I had more friends and people who were looking out for me. I thought there was less hate.

    I’m scared.

  36. Amy, we’re scared together.

  37. I’m an ultra-conservative person living in MO. I voted largely for GOP candidates, but my ballot had a few Libertarians and a few Dems on it. I didn’t vote for Trump and am quite terrified he’ll do what he said he’ll do. Every solution he offers to a problem is a massive unconstitutional use of government power. Doing what he has said he’ll do will be devastating to individual liberties. He isn’t a conservative, but they voted for him anyway because Hilary is/was/would have been awful.

    I sat in my small local café this morning and listened like I’ve done for weeks. The conversation was about getting the fall calves rounded up, getting barns/hay ready for winter, about how kids were doing in school, one couple having car trouble, and a few people making plans for Thanksgiving. These are the same conversations that would have taken place if the Dems had won big instead of the GOP.

    Other than the mental anguish we put ourselves through this election will have almost no significant impact on how our lives are run and the decisions we should make. Just breathe. I put myself through mental anxiety throughout Obama’s presidency (and will probably do so with Trump). But I survived, you’ll survive too. If you can stop the mental gymnastics of all the things that could go wrong then you’ll be much happier.

    I’m sorry you are all so scared. I’m sorry I’m so scared. I’m sorry our nation elected a person who is scary.

  38. Thanks Jax.

  39. Blanche, honey. This hurts. Share my burden of fears a minute. Pretend to empathize.

  40. I suppose a trip to a local temple would be appropriate advice for those seeking comfort at this time. Also, it might help to pretend HRC was elected instead, and to think of what you would say or write to a Trump supporter to assure him or her the world was not going to end tomorrow. Surely, given the fact the popular vote was just about 50/50, you have to understand there are a whole lot of people who don’t think as highly of HRC or the Democratic party as you do.

  41. The temple can be a real source of comfort for many. Good idea.

  42. The doom and gloom predicted by the opposition for either candidate was the same. Apparently, a policy was good if their candidate did it and was bad if the other one did it. (I don’t think that’s really how it really works.) Both candidates were monsters according to the other side. The thing is, much of what was bandied about were lies. Repeating a lie, even 10,000 times does not make it true. Trump will be a worse president than his supporters hope and a better president than his detractors fear. It ever is so.

  43. Last Lemming says:

    I hear a lot of people expressing shock that their countrymen could do such a thing. We all knew Trump was going to get a lot of votes, so that can’t be a shock. And as of noon on Wednesday, Hillary is leading in the popular vote (and it looks to me like that’s going to hold up). So “most” of the country did not, in fact, vote for a [insert various -ists here] for President. That we have to live with such an odious alternative to the (likely) popular vote winner, we can blame the founding fathers.

  44. Given that I have nothing nice to say, I will say nothing.

  45. Thank you.

  46. No, Last Lemming, if we stuck with the founding fathers anticipated, then the electors would use their independent judgment and vote for who they thought would be the best candidate. The electoral college system we use now is more a product of the late 19th century than of the founding fathers.

  47. The US Constitution means whatever five of the justices say it means. This is the most daunting of all of the consequences of electing Trump president.

  48. I don’t know if this is the place to put this, but for a little perspective…three of my kids were in a car accident on the way to school this morning. They were hit by another teen as they were pulling onto the highway. They are careful, but somehow didn’t see the other car after waiting for a couple semis to pass. (The other driver was at highway speed before hitting the brakes.) The cars were both totaled, but all 4 kids walked away from the accident with minor injuries, the worst of which was my son being cut near the eye by his glasses which were lost in the crash – no damage to the eye though. If I have learned anything this morning, it is that God is watching us, protecting us, both individually and as a country. Anyone who thinks a particular candidate is the answer to our problems is putting their trust in the wrong place.

  49. That does help. Thanks – and sorry for the accident, glad your family is OK.

  50. I’m having a hard time feeling hope or optimism. As I was watching my toddler run around the kitchen this morning and my 7 month old smiling at us from the high chair, my heart broke for them, and for the crumbling world we’ll be leaving for them.

    In the grand scheme of things, this matters little, but I have no idea how I’m going to teach Gospel Doctrine this Sunday. How am I supposed to look at all those exuberant faces and talk to them about the gospel? I feel like the gospel I love and understand and the one they do are completely different languages.

  51. Thanks, Steve. We are still in shock. I guess that’s why I thought it might relate to the commenters this morning.

  52. Even more depressing when you look at the values of BOTH candidates. In my view, it wasn’t 51% electing a “deplorable” person over your preferred candidate, it was 98% collectively nominating a choice between the lesser of two evils. Sorry, Steve, that I can’t offer much comfort. Your best point as that we do need to stand up together and pull together. Both candidates do have some good qualities. I think that will require focusing on finding common ground.

  53. Sorry, Trump hasn’t exhibited any good qualities before or during this campaign, so I’m not holding out hope. I always had this belief that we Americans were smarter and would never go too far afield in selecting a leader. Today, that hope and belief is shattered and the ground has dramatically shifted beneath our feet. The Republicans have been targeting and pursuing the Clintons for 30 yrs. Noboby has had more scrutiny or been examined more than them. And last night they hit pay dirt. Americans–Republicans–have elected someone who hasn’t been examined at all. Not so much as a single tax return.

    Today I’m ashamed to be an American. I’m ashamed to be an LDS member who grew up in UT. So much for any claim of the moral high ground.

  54. Stephen Miller says:

    It looks like people are setting themselves up to make sure Donald Trump fails. This then will become a self fulfilling prophecy. People vote their wallets not foreign ideologies, not LGBTQ issues, not race nor for the poor or other human rights concerns. The only thing countries go to war for is the wallet.

  55. I understand many of the sentiments being described here because they’re exactly what I felt when Obama was elected to a second term. I thought that God had given up on America, that we were being thrown to the wolves. Yet here we are 4 years later: the country survived, and so did I. Finding peace for me meant giving up listening to talk radio, no longer reading my favored political blogs, and not tuning in to the cable news channels. Getting away from the contention on which those outlets thrive went a long way toward relieving anxiety. I’m sorry for the grief many of you feel. And I pray that a Trump presidency won’t be the disaster some predict. Really – how many presidents have actually accomplished what they said they would during their campaigns?

  56. Thanks Tina.

  57. Tina,
    We will survive. The question is, in what form? I believe the difference between your experience and my experience at this moment in time is that people lied to you and distorted about who Obama was and what type of president he would be. But I listen to both sides of the political spectrum and do my research because I want to know the facts–not merely be a tool of any market-tested, audience-focused, one-sided media. I want the straight facts. Obama is/was a very smart, stable, kind, ethical person and leader–not the foreigner born in Kenya, the fake Christian or the fake American, people painted him to be. Additonally, Obama had very few days of a democratically-controlled, in-session Congress. On the other hand, Trump reveals much about who he is by what he says and does without anybody distorting it. Truly frightening. (Did anybody even look into Trump’s business practices?). Really, our only hope is that he is largely a figurehead who appoints solid, honest, ethical, stable, capable and experienced leaders and delegates most/all decision-making to them.

    But you are right. Finding peace for me right now is turning off the tv and radio. I too, hope that the Trump presidency won’t be the economic disaster his plan suggests, or a foreign policy disaster or an environmental disaster for our planet. But it all starts with truth and facts and right now too few of us have a grasp on that.

  58. it's a series of tubes says:

    Additonally, Obama had very few days of a democratically-controlled, in-session Congress.

    For his first two years in office, Obama had both the House and a filibuster-proof Senate; an even more dominant position than Trump will start off with.

  59. Trump is straight forward because he has nothing to hide. We should all find that refreshing in a politician.

  60. Except that his openness is exposing blatantly anti-christian principles of greed, self-centeredness, bullying, materialism, suspicion of everyone who doesn’t look like him, misogyny, and racism. If you define “anti-Christ” as “someone who actively works to subvert and undermine Christ’s teachings,” then we’ve just elected an anti-Christ as president. Which I believe is a first for this country.

  61. it’s a series of tubes,
    correction: Obama had very few days of a filibuster-proof majority. 72 to be exact.

    At the beginning of Obama’s term, January 2009 there were 55-57 Democratic Senators, 41 Republicans and 2 Independents (left-leaning Sanders and Lieberman). When Al Franken was determined to be the winner in his race and was sworn in July 2009 it became 58 Democratic Senators. However, Ted Kennedy was very ill, largely absent. and died in Aug. 2009. His seat switched to Republican Scott Brown in January 2010. Democratic Senator Robert Byrd was also ill and died in June 2010. For 4 mons and 1 week Democrats had a filibuster-proof majority with 72 working days during that time period.

    The House switched to Republican control in January 2011. (Democrats lost Senate seats but still held a slim majority of 50-51 seats).

    The question is will Republicans use the “nuclear option” and change the rules of the Senate to require only a majority vote, not a supermajority 60 vote, in order to push through their agenda?
    My guess is yes, since they’ve demonstrated and stated they are willing to push the limit on Supreme Court vacancies.

    last post

  62. Yes, the filibuster will disappear shortly. Whether we go to simple majority… that’s a pretty big shift.

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