Second Coming: Awake to . . . Your Awful Situation

President John F. Kennedy motorcade, Dallas, Texas, Friday, November 22, 1963. Also in the limousine are Jackie Kennedy, Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, Nellie.
President John F. Kennedy motorcade, Dallas, Texas, Friday, November 22, 1963. Also in the limousine are Jackie Kennedy, Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, Nellie.

It was 1963, 57 years ago today. I had just turned 6. It was a Friday morning and I was home from kindergarten. I remember my mother screaming from her bedroom. I had never heard my mother scream before or since. I ran to the door of her room. President John F. Kennedy had been shot in Dallas, Texas.

For days, the only thing on our four television channels was news of the assassination. All these years later, it’s hard to believe my parents allowed me to watch this nightmare played over and over again. I can still remember sitting in front of our black-and-white TV watching Lee Harvey Oswald wince as he was shot by the mobster Jack Ruby.

Even as a young child, I knew something was not right with this series of events. Something seemed fake about the whole thing. I couldn’t express it in words and I even have a hard time doing it now. But after thinking about it for nearly six decades, it seems like more of a coup d’état or secret combination than an assassination.

By the time I reached my late teens, I discovered for the first time these words in the Book of Mormon. Moroni, the last writer in the book, was recounting the fall of a civilization which he laid at the feet of sin, pride, and murderous conspiracies:

Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up. (Ether 8:24.)

“This Nation Won’t Fail”

Given the condition of our nation right now, I’m grateful that a former missionary companion and friend sent me this Harold B Lee quote the other day. We have reason to hope.

Men may fail in this country, earthquakes may come, seas may heave beyond their bounds, there may be great drought, disaster, and hardship, but this nation, founded on principles laid down by men whom God raised up, will never fail. This is the cradle of humanity, where life on this earth began in the Garden of Eden. This is the place of the new Jerusalem. This is the place that the Lord said is favored above all other nations in all the world. This is the place where the Savior will come to His temple. This is the favored land in all the world. Yes, I repeat, men may fail, but this nation won’t fail. I have faith in America; you and I must have faith in America, if we understand the teachings of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are living in a day when we must pay heed to these challenges. I plead with you not to preach pessimism. Preach that this is the greatest country in all the world. This is the favored land. This is the land of our forefathers. It is the nation that will stand despite whatever trials or crises it may yet have to pass through. (Ye Are the Light of the World [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1974] 350–51.)

It seems our country has been shrouded by a pall ever since that dark day in November 1963. There are too many unreconciled independent facts for me to not be suspicious of what happened then and what is happening now in the United States. There are too many contradictions and too many threats of violence. There is too much obvious propaganda and too much censorship. There must be something rotten in Washington, D.C.

It’s time we waken to our awful situation. The media is biased and unreliable. The current election, according to many independent sources and witnesses, appears to be fraught with manipulation, irregularities, broken laws, and broken trust.

What and who are we supposed to believe?

I’ll wait for proof before I claim to have it, but I’m paying keen attention to evidence of mass corruption. Until we have proof, I’ll trust God. I’ll trust the heaven-inspired Constitution of the United States. I’ll trust in and cherish the sovereign, individual rights guaranteed by that constitution.

Official Whitehouse portrait of John F. Kennedy (Aaron Shikler, 1970)

May God bless President John F. Kennedy. May he rest in peace. And may God bless and preserve this great nation.

The prophets have testified that the United States will hold together, but it may look different after God is done with it.

I believe in America. But I’m braced for the political earthquake that is about to shock this nation and shake her to the core.

Finally, my [sisters and] brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints (Ephesians 6:10–18).

Second Coming: Brace Yourself

Over the last few months, the Lord’s Spirit has whispered these words to me, “Brace yourself.” These words have been repeated to me many times. I am taking them quite seriously.

In the last two weeks, I’ve encountered videos online where two unrelated people have witnessed that they are hearing the same prophetic words, “Brace yourself.” I can’t help but feel that I must take these words and these times very seriously.

I appreciated very much these two videos by Michal B. Rush which he published earlier this month (July 2020). He briefly puts into clear context the prophecies in 1 Nephi, 2 Nephi, and 3 Nephi regarding the last days and what we can expect when the remnant of Israel which will return before Christ’s Second Coming. These are great reminders of how seriously we need to take the scriptures, study them for ourselves, and not put off our devotion to learning and understanding them any longer. The time is short. In my heart I feel that the days of the Lord’s forbearance are few.

Part 1

I am doing my best to be prepared, to brace myself as I have been instructed. I would not be surprised if some of the readers of this blog have heard and are heeding the same or similar words from the Holy Spirit in the last few months.

I cannot speak to your experience, but the sun-bright message of the Lord to me is “the time to prepare is right now.” The season of taking His counsel lightly has passed, but rest assured, we can find protection and peace in His sacred Word and in our covenants with Him.

The intrigues, criminal enterprises, and secret combinations of those we normally would trust at the highest levels of our governments, worldwide are soon to be revealed, much to the shock of the world. As a friend and someone who cares for your spiritual safety, I repeat: Brace yourself.

Second Coming: Iniquity Shall Abound

If you’re watching the signs of the times, here’s one that’s pretty evident:

And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. (Matthew 24:12.)

There’s little more iniquity as cold hearted than what I am about to share, a signal that modern civilization is in jeopardy.

This isn’t a topic I want to talk about. It’s so perverse and sickening that I get physically and mentally messed up just thinking about it. It’s hard to imagine crimes worse than these, but in the near future, they will be spoken from the housetops, and we’ll likely be very surprised when we discover the perpetrators.

I am talking about human trafficking, especially child sex trafficking. Although illegal, human slavery is the worst it has ever been in terms of numbers of victims. It’s one of the great blights on our nation and the world.

Let facts be submitted to a candid world:

The statistics are staggering. It’s hard to think about the unbearable human suffering they represent, especially the suffering of innocents. It’s time to face it. This horrible crime is growing.

Okay, now for the hard part. I’ll do this in the form of questions. I’ll let you do your own research. The answers are very controversial which will distract from the message. You may be surprised by what you find with a few Google searches.

  • Given the profit per victim ($21,800), who can actually afford to “purchase” a sex slave?
  • Why are more and more sex crimes in the entertainment industry coming to light?
  • Why do California and Texas account for the largest arrests for trafficking in the United States? Think logically.
  • How could trafficking reach such an astounding rate? Who in the higher spheres of influence has the power to change this? Who has been turning a blind eye to it?
  • Why are the numbers of human trafficking arrests rising in the United States over the last two years?
  • What bill was signed into law in late 2017 that helps bring down human trafficking perpetrators?

There are those who would like to make this go away. Some media outlets don’t give it fair airtime because, well, you decide.

How can you help? You can get involved with or consider a monthly contribution to organizations like Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.) or India-based Prajwala. We can all take action, with a simple, daily prayer, or dedicating time to learning more about it, or making others aware of what is going on in our communities. It’s time to wake from the sleep of hell. We can all find ways to speak up and make a difference.

Learn more by watching The Abolitionists or Operation Toussaint. For a shorter introduction, watch Tim Ballard, founder of O.U.R. in this Talk at Google.

Second Coming: Secret Combinations in Our Day

Courtesy LDS Media Library
Consider the fate of Ammonihah after they rejected the living prophets, Alma and Amulek.

So, what is a secret combination? This term is introduced to us by Nephi the son of Lehi in the second book of the Book of Mormon:

“[The devil] stirreth up the children of men unto secret combinations of murder and all manner of secret works of darkness.” (2 Ne. 9:9.)

According to the Guide to the Scriptures, a secret combination is “an organization of people bound together by oaths to carry out the evil purposes of the group.” Satan has inspired the creation of such societies in the hearts of men and women from the beginning of time (see Helaman 6:21–31). Moses tells us that these secret organizations started in the days of Cain who murdered his brother Abel to obtain his property (see Moses 5:51).

Secret combinations are still among us. That’s an understatement to be sure. Many would like to label these as conspiracy theories. I admit such theories abound and some cannot be reliably verified, but as Ezra Taft Benson said:

This most correct book on earth [the Book of Mormon] states that the downfall of two great American civilizations [the Jaredites and the Nephites] came as a result of secret conspiracies whose desire was to overthrow the freedom of the people . . . There is no conspiracy theory in the Book of Mormon —it is a conspiracy fact.” —Ezra Taft Benson, “Civic Standards for the Faithful Saints,” April 1972 (emphasis added)

(Please consider reading or listening to Elder Benson’s entire talk.)

What are some examples of modern conspiracies? They’re not apparent, but they’re prevalent. They’re often not openly reported by the media, but there are plenty of clues all around us. Here are a few to consider:

  • Unusual, unexplained deaths of politicians or those close to them.
  • Widespread, endemic spying via social media.
  • Human trafficking and pedophile rings.
  • International weapons deals.
  • Voter fraud.
  • Staged disasters or wars to forward a secret, political agenda.
  • Bribery and coverups.
  • Secret funding of news reporting.

As outlandish as these may seem or as some may characterize them, all these crimes and atrocities, and others like them, will come to light in due time. Mark my word.

The rebellious shall be pierced with much sorrow; for their iniquities shall be spoken upon the housetops, and their secret acts shall be revealed. (D&C 1:3.)

Yes, it’s hard to believe that the intoxicatedly wealthy, business magnates, movie stars, world leaders, and celebrities could be involved in such things. I am sure we will all be very surprised and even shocked when these things begin to come into full light.

Moroni son of Mormon warned us centuries ago that:

Whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not. Wherefore, O ye Gentiles, it is wisdom in God that these things should be shown unto you, that thereby ye may repent of your sins, and suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain—and the work, yea, even the work of destruction come upon you, yea, even the sword of the justice of the Eternal God shall fall upon you, to your overthrow and destruction if ye shall suffer these things to be. (Ether 8:22–23.)

I believe that the Book of Mormon is a textbook for the last days. As Elder Benson said, secret combinations and their works of murder to get gain brought about the entire destruction of both the Jaredite and Nephite civilizations. They could destroy our civilization as well.

What of our times? What is happening to our civilization? Is it possible that secret combinations have grown up around us, undetected?

And he [the Lord] had sworn in his wrath unto the brother of Jared, that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off when the fulness of his wrath should come upon them. And now, we can behold the decrees of God concerning this land, that it is a land of promise; and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall serve God, or they shall be swept off when the fulness of his wrath shall come upon them. And the fulness of his wrath cometh upon them when they are ripened in iniquity. (Ether 2:8–9; emphasis added.)

What are we to do? We can seek, follow, and obey the true and living God, humble ourselves, repent, and offer to Him the one gift, the one sacrifice, that He wants most from us, a broken heart and a contrite spirit (see D&C 59:8;). If we do these things, we have nothing to fear and all will be well, not matter what happens.

I’m not one to get caught up in popular trends and I don’t go overboard about crazy theories, but I can smell some rotting fruit. It’s beyond ripeness and it stinks to high heaven.

And others will he [Satan] pacify, and lull them away into carnal security, that they will say: All is well in Zion; yea, Zion prospereth, all is well—and thus the devil cheateth their souls, and leadeth them away carefully down to hell. (2 Nephi 28:21.)

No, all is not well in Zion. We have had these warnings in our hands for nearly 200 years—it’s time to plant them in our hearts. Now would be a great time to prayerfully open our eyes and prepare. It’s on my mind every single day.

Second Coming: Secret Combinations

Cain and Abel by Pietro Novelli (1603–1647)

The phrases secret combination or secret combinations appear 20 times in the standard works, mostly in the Book of Mormon. A secret combination is a pact between two or more parties to commit criminal acts, usually violent, under a cloak of secrecy—often involving secret societies and the exchange of oaths and signs—for gain, power, and the glory of this world.

Probably the first secret combination was made between Satan and Cain who slew his brother Abel in order to obtain his flocks. The annihilation of the Jaredite and Nephite peoples who once lived on the American continents were precipitated and accelerated by secret combinations, as Moroni explains:

And it came to pass that they formed a secret combination, even as they of old; which combination is most abominable and wicked above all, in the sight of God; for the Lord worketh not in secret combinations, neither doth he will that man should shed blood, but in all things hath forbidden it, from the beginning of man. And now I, Moroni, do not write the manner of their oaths and combinations, for it hath been made known unto me that they are had among all people, and they are had among the Lamanites. And they have caused the destruction of this people of whom I am now speaking, and also the destruction of the people of Nephi. And whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not. (Ether 8:18–22; emphasis added)

In 1833, the Lord explained that He gave the Word of Wisdom “in consequence of evils and designs which do and will exist in the hearts of conspiring men in the last days” (D&C 89:4). This also suggests the possible presence of secret combinations. Let me explain.

In the revelation known as section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord counsels us against using such addictive substances as alcohol and tobacco. It seems that the modern businesses that purvey these and other addictive and harmful substances have likely been cooked up by “conspiring men” for gain, under the protection of local and national laws. I am assured that such businesses will cease to exist when Christ reigns supreme over this earth again.

I am not much on conspiracy theories and I don’t wish to delve into or postulate on them, but I constantly see evidence of coalitions of evil intent which the scriptures describe as secret combinations. I fear they will become so widespread that they will prove the near overthrow or near entire destruction of families, corporations, governments, societies, even civilization itself, before the Lord comes again. But they will not succeed.