Ear­lylead­er­s­de­ter­mined to­buil­daZion­inU­tah

Serve Daily - - MERIT ACADEMY - By Jesse Fisher

In­this 50th “Thoughts on Zion” ar­ti­cle, we’re ex­plor­ing the de­ter­mi­na­tion by the early LDS apos­tles and prophets to es­tab­lish a Zion in Utah.

We start out with my fa­vorite Brigham Young quote about build­ing Zion, which al­ways makes me smile: “I de­sire [Congress] to let us alone .... Let them at­tend to their own busi­ness, and we will build up Zion while they go to hell.” Bravo!

Brother Brigham also ex­pressed his de­ter­mi­na­tion when he said, “If [the mobs] will not let us alone, we will take the mus­ket and the sword in one hand, the trowel and the ham­mer in the other, and build up the Zion of our God; and they can­not pre­vent it.”

That de­ter­mi­na­tion also burned in the heart Pres­i­dent John Tay­lor. In the Oc­to­ber 1881 Gen­eral Con­fer­ence, he said, “... all heaven is in­ter­ested in the work in which we are en­gaged; and what­ever other men may think about th­ese things, we know what we are do­ing, and we shall try, in the name of the Lord, and un­der His guid­ance and di­rec­tion, to build up his Zion upon the earth ... and [es­tab­lish] not only the Church of Christ, but His Zion and the king­dom of God upon the earth.”

Then, a year later, “The work we are en­gaged in is not a phan­tom. We are go­ing to build up the Zion of God; and the king­dom of God will con­tinue to grow and in­crease, un­til ‘the king­doms of this world are be­come the king­doms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for­ever.’ If we will be faith­ful, God will bless us and pros­per us, and all things spo­ken in the Prophets will be ful­filled.”

Apos­tle Wil­ford Woodruff also shared the vi­sion. In the Oc­to­ber 1873 con­fer­ence, he said, “But in spite of the fol­lies that some among us de­light in, we are go­ing to build up Zion. We are go­ing to fill th­ese moun­tains with the cities and peo­ple of God. The weapons formed against Zion will be bro­ken, and the na­tions of the Gen­tiles will visit her and their kings will come to the bright­ness of her ris­ing.”

As pres­i­dent of the Quo­rum of the Twelve, Woodruff reaf­firmed the goal in March of 1889 when he said, “We are liv­ing in a great day. Th­ese moun­tains are filled with Lat­ter-day Saints, in ful­fill­ment of the rev­e­la­tions of God. The Lord has com­menced this work, and He is not go­ing to leave it. I warn all men of that. Zion is go­ing to be built up. Zion is go­ing to be es­tab­lished. Zion is go­ing to be clothed with the glory of God.”

Though that ef­fort was shut down by the U.S. Gov­ern­ment in the late 1880s, prophets sug­gests it must re­sume be­fore Christ can re­turn. Will it be by our hands, or does God need to find some other peo­ple to do it?

More at Build­ingZion.org.

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