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LORD GATHERS HIS ELECT TO BE `PREPARED AGAINST TRIBULATION’

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As early as September 1830, the Lord had spoken of the gathering of His elect that they might be prepared "against the day when tribulation and desolation are sent forth upon the wicked." (D&C 29:8.)

In Church History and Modern Revelation, Elder Joseph Fielding Smith wrote: "From the very beginning of the Church in this dispensation, there has been agitation in relation to the place of the city of New Jerusalem. The first knowledge given that this city was to be built on this continent came from the record of Ether in the Book of Mormon. (Chapter 13.) Naturally the saints were desirious to learn of the site of this city and to assist in building it."In Section 45, the Lord called upon the saints to gather their wealth for the purchasing of lands and for the preparation for the building of the New Jerusalem which was to be built somewhere in the western country. The Glory of the Lord is to rest upon this city when it is built, and there will be gathered to it out of every nation those that are righteous and to them it shall be a city of refuge unto which the wicked cannot come."

"This is a dispensation of gathering," a notation in Doctrine and Covenants Commentary says regarding Section 48. " `Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made covenant with me by sacrifice.' (Psalm 50:5.) And not only does the spirit of gathering rest upon the saints. The nations of the world have also become partakers of the same spirit. Zionism among the Jews, pan-Hellenism among the Greeks, pan-Slavism, etc., are illustrations of the operation of the Holy Spirit among the children of men toward the unification of all into a great brotherhood. And it is all due to the establishment of the Church in this age of the world."