Wilderland

Times of the Gentiles

Recommended Posts

I know we are in the midst of gathering scattered Israel, but I wonder, when I read changing daily news about missionaries being called home from foreign missions, if the time of the gentiles is not now very rapidly closing, our has shut.

It may not fit the template I imagined when thinking about the time of the gentiles coming to an end, but it is possible current world circumstances are a part of it. The gathering of scattered Israel may be more literal than we presume. Thoughts?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You do realize this is going to be full of speculation right? I think you are a few hundred years too late to see it transition from the Gentiles back to the Jews.

Pretty much everyone agrees that the initial transition from the Jews to the Gentiles happened in the New Testament.  It has a vision (Peter's) and a Dispensation (Paul). Seeing this we should look for a Vision and Dispensation recorded in scriptures when it transitions again.

May I point you to Doctrine and Covenants section 110 verses 12-16 which is a Vision, and a Dispensation recorded in scripture?

If this opinion of my holds true this means the Gentiles rejected the fullness of the Gospel in the Kirkland era and reaped the destruction of that rejection.  While the Jews started responding and being gathered in.  To me this explains a lot of things in church history that are otherwise hard to understand.  You have one group being condemned and rejected because of their hardness and rejection of the Lord and a new group beginning to accept and turn to God and being blessed... and they are intermingled at times

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Wilderland said:

I know we are in the midst of gathering scattered Israel, but I wonder, when I read changing daily news about missionaries being called home from foreign missions, if the time of the gentiles is not now very rapidly closing, our has shut.

It may not fit the template I imagined when thinking about the time of the gentiles coming to an end, but it is possible current world circumstances are a part of it. The gathering of scattered Israel may be more literal than we presume. Thoughts?

"And thus we see that by small means the Lord can bring about great things."

But Israel is also gathered by drawing in as many gentiles as possible, so our efforts are still required.

Edited by CV75

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Wilderland said:

It may not fit the template I imagined 

I've said this before...but in case you didn't see it (forgive the repetition), there is only one thing I am sure about when it comes to revelation - and that is that we will likely be surprised  we see how it is fulfilled.  

I always thought the moon turning to blood would be a huge event, news casters talking about it, scientists studying, people talking...basically like Coronavirus.  And yet it happened, and no one noticed.  We wouldn't even know it happened if Pres. Hinckley hadn't told us!  (And some Latter-Day Saints missed that too....not a criticism, just saying it wasn't even a big discussion among church members.)  

What I take from all this is to keep my mind and heart open, read the scriptures and ponder how the prophesies might occur, but don't get too attached to my own ideas.  AND listen CLOSELY to everything the Prophet says.  

To my knowledge there has never been a time like this when all the temples were temporarily closed, missionaries coming home, and everyone meeting in their own homes.  Yes, I think this means something about the Last Days!  I'm not sure what...but I'm rereading Pres. Nelson's talks, following His counsel, and looking forward to General Conference (another first?)  in a week and a half.  

We live in exciting, scary and interesting times.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Wilderland said:

I know we are in the midst of gathering scattered Israel, but I wonder, when I read changing daily news about missionaries being called home from foreign missions, if the time of the gentiles is not now very rapidly closing, our has shut.

It may not fit the template I imagined when thinking about the time of the gentiles coming to an end, but it is possible current world circumstances are a part of it. The gathering of scattered Israel may be more literal than we presume. Thoughts?

I believe your question is well asked.  But to answer the question we must deal with many other questions and answers.   Before going there I will give a little bit of opinion - and the only opinion I am qualified to give is my own.  It is my opinion that very few (including posters on this forum) understand the width and depth of meaning concerning the terms of Israel and the gentiles.  There is a third term used in scripture to define another category - I will leave it to the forum to think on that third category and how it relates.  I will also suggest that the best scripture to study for understanding is Isaiah.  But Isaiah is an enigma to most students of scripture.  I would suggest that the reason Isaiah is so difficult to understand is because of its poetic format and symbolic nature.  Those that insist on literal interpretation of scripture (that is the basis of practically every doctrinal disagreement) will find navigating the spiritual subtleties of Isaiah too much of a chore outside of snippets here and there.

This would not be the first time our missionaries have been called home - but who knows - it may be the last.  One thing I believe for sure - what is happening will bring about change.  There is a very significant phrase in the Book of Mormon that indicates a spiritual paradigm shift.  The phrase is "And it came to pass".  I believe you have focused on this place in history as one of those "And it came to pass".

 

The Traveler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since the recall of missionaries seemed to drive the OP, I thought I would give an update on my church's missions status. I know that "gentile" is a word used in LDS circles to describe non-LDS. So, here's how one such group is doing during COVID19. Ironically, it is our world missions director who got the virus. He's fighting for his life, but seems to have taken a turn for the better. So, our website had regular updates on his condition. Many of our missionaries are restricted in travel, and for some that means not being able to be on the field. However, with a missions force just under 2,000 full-time, it appears most remain on site, doing evangelism (much like LDS missionaries do), leading churches, teaching at Bible colleges, etc. I suspect most religious organizations are in a season where personal devotion, individual spiritual disciplines (prayer, fasting, etc.) have become more important as whole-group meetings remain suspended. Perhaps, once this virus is in the rearview mirror, we will come to realize just how important the unseen spiritual work we do is.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I apologize in advance for the lengthy post! 
 

 

First, from the scriptures: 

D&C 45:24 And this I have told you concerning Jerusalem; and when that day shall come, shall a remnant be scattered among all nations;


25 But they shall be gathered again; but they shall remain until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.


26 And in that day shall be heard of wars and rumors of wars, and the whole earth shall be in commotion, and men’s hearts shall fail them, and they shall say that Christ delayeth his coming until the end of the earth.


27 And the love of men shall wax cold, and iniquity shall abound.


28 And when the times of the Gentiles is come in, a light shall break forth among them that sit in darkness, and it shall be the fulness of my gospel;


29 But they receive it not; for they perceive not the light, and they turn their hearts from me because of the precepts of men.


30 And in that generation shall the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

 

=======================

 

Second from the Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual: 

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/manual/doctrine-and-covenants-student-manual/section-45-looking-forth-for-the-great-day-of-the-lord?lang=eng

 

“In the Olivet Discourse, the Savior gave four signs to indicate when the times of the Gentiles were over. Three are given in section 45, and one is given in Luke’s account of the great discourse.

1. The Jews will be gathered back to the land of Jerusalem (see D&C 45:25). In the April 1960 general conference, Elder George Q. Morris of the Quorum of the Twelve discussed this sign:

“I think perhaps we may well now not continue saying the Jews are going to gather in Jerusalem. I think now we may well say they have gathered.The ultimate returns will come later as they develop this land and are joined by others. …

“This statement by a writer is very interesting:

“‘Strangely enough when the State of Israel was reborn in 1948, it was a nation of 600,000, the same number which the Bible reports that Mosesled out of bondage in Egypt. It now numbers some two million, the same number which it is said populated the ancient Kingdom of Solomon, when Israel was in all its glory.’

“That is why we may now say that the Jews have returned to Palestine.” (In Conference Report, Apr. 1960, pp. 100–101.)

2. It will be in a time of great social turmoil (see D&C 45:26–27). One need only follow current events as reported in the news media for a day or two to see turmoil like the Savior described.

3. The Gentiles will for the most part reject the gospel (see D&C 45:28–30). President Joseph Fielding Smith, writing about these verses, said: “‘And when the times of the Gentiles is come in, a light shall break forth among them that sit in darkness, and it shall be the fulness of my Gospel,’ the Lord said in this revelation [D&C 45:28]. The meaning is that when the time had come for the restoration of the Gospel—in the times of the Gentiles—that it would not be perceived because the hearts of the people are turned away by the precepts of men. However, in that generation this should happen, the times of the Gentiles should be fulfilled.” (Church History and Modern Revelation, 1:196.)

4. Jerusalem will no longer be “trodden down of the Gentiles” (Luke 21:24). Again President Smith explained: “When we consider the words of the Savior to his disciples, that the Jews should be scattered and ‘Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled,’ we have a fair understanding of the meaning of this … verse [D&C 45:30] in this revelation. Jerusalem was trodden down of the Gentiles from the day of its destruction until the close of the year 1917, when it was freed from Turkish rule by General Edmund H. Allenby of the British forces. After the war Palestine became a British mandate, and Great Britain by proclamation declared that country to be a refuge for the Jews, who were invited to return. … It is very significant, however, that Jerusalem is no longer trodden down by the Gentiles and the Jews are again gathering there. This is the sign given by our Lord, for the end of the times of the Gentiles. We are now in the transition period and shortly the day of the Jew will dawn and the Gospel will be taken to them and to the remnants on this land.” (Church History and Modern Revelation,1:196–97.)

When Joseph Fielding Smith wrote those words in 1947, Israel had not yet been made a state; they were still under the British mandate. But on 15 May 1948, Israel became an independent nation and declared Jerusalem to be her capital. In the war that followed this declaration, the Jews could maintain control of western Jerusalem only. East Jerusalem became part of the state of Jordan. In general conference in 1966, Elder Smith, now President of the Quorum of the Twelve, said: “Jesus said the Jews would be scattered among all nations and Jerusalem would be trodden down by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles were fulfilled. (Luke 21:24.) The prophecy in Section 45, verses 24–29, of the Doctrine and Covenantsregarding the Jews was literally fulfilled. Jerusalem, which was trodden down by the Gentiles, is no longer trodden down but is made the home for the Jews. They are returning to Palestine, and by this we may know that the times of the Gentiles are near their close.” (In Conference Report, Apr. 1966, p. 13.)

During the Six-Day War of 1967, Israel conquered the West Bank, including Jerusalem, and for the first time since the city fell to the legions of Titus in A.D. 70, Jerusalem came completely under the control of a Jewish government.” 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just read an article on Messianic Judaism (Jews who believe Jesus is Messiah) from the Jews for Jesus website. The author immigrated to Israel and is raising his family there. He says that they can largely practice their faith, but there is some discrimination and negative feelings. The word "missionary" is considered a curse in the Hebrew language (China is similar, though for very different reasons).

It is probably difficult for a country founded as the Jewish nation, despite its heavily secular citizenry, to allow for open religious pluralism. After all, Israel is surrounded by Muslim nations that are hostile towards them. Would it ever allow open Muslim proselytizing?

Despite the difficulties, Jesus gave the Great Commission to go and make disciples, saying, "First to Jerusalem."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, prisonchaplain said:

Since the recall of missionaries seemed to drive the OP, I thought I would give an update on my church's missions status. I know that "gentile" is a word used in LDS circles to describe non-LDS. So, here's how one such group is doing during COVID19. Ironically, it is our world missions director who got the virus. He's fighting for his life, but seems to have taken a turn for the better. So, our website had regular updates on his condition. Many of our missionaries are restricted in travel, and for some that means not being able to be on the field. However, with a missions force just under 2,000 full-time, it appears most remain on site, doing evangelism (much like LDS missionaries do), leading churches, teaching at Bible colleges, etc. I suspect most religious organizations are in a season where personal devotion, individual spiritual disciplines (prayer, fasting, etc.) have become more important as whole-group meetings remain suspended. Perhaps, once this virus is in the rearview mirror, we will come to realize just how important the unseen spiritual work we do is.  

I am concerned for your world missions director, especially if he is over 60.  I am also concerned with many missionaries doing "evangelism" face to face and traveling from house to house and community to community.  I am concerned because of something my parents once told me.  "Not to be so spiritually focused that we are of no earthly value."  This has been a hard lesson for me in my life.  I have assumed that if on the L-rd's errand that I do not need to consider physical circumstances.  Or as Jesus said, "Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves."  I have learned that when the L-rd causes it to rain that it will rain on the righteous that are outside and the wicked that take shelter will not suffer the rain.  In short it is necessary for the righteous to seek shelter in the rain.

But what of those upon who the rain falls upon that need assistance?  In such time as we now see with COVID19 it is the care givers that concern me most.  Most of who will take protective precaution for themselves as best as they are able.  My personal prayers are not just for assistance for those like your world missions director but also that they will be inspired and wise to be able to remain on their mission.  I have come to believe that unseen spiritual work is often reflected in the empirical side of things as well.  Let us be wise for ourselves and for others we hope to assist.

 

The Traveler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
52 minutes ago, prisonchaplain said:

I just read an article on Messianic Judaism (Jews who believe Jesus is Messiah) from the Jews for Jesus website. The author immigrated to Israel and is raising his family there. He says that they can largely practice their faith, but there is some discrimination and negative feelings. The word "missionary" is considered a curse in the Hebrew language (China is similar, though for very different reasons).

It is probably difficult for a country founded as the Jewish nation, despite its heavily secular citizenry, to allow for open religious pluralism. After all, Israel is surrounded by Muslim nations that are hostile towards them. Would it ever allow open Muslim proselytizing?

Despite the difficulties, Jesus gave the Great Commission to go and make disciples, saying, "First to Jerusalem."

Sometimes it is difficult to understand and define specific meaning to ancient dualism.  Often we refer to ourselves as "Gentiles" because this is the day of the Gentiles.  It is important to realize the great miracle of Jonah being sent to save a wicked Gentile city.  But back to the Gospel - take first to Jerusalem.  We learn that afterwards the Gospel would be taken to every nation, kindred, tongue and people.  But if we understand the great Chiasm in scripture that the "Last shall be first and the First shall be last" - that as Jesus and his Apostles would begin in Jerusalem - that the Jews would be scattered among the Gentiles but prior to the return of Jesus - the Jews would return to Jerusalem at the end of times - assisted by the Gentiles.   This is the end of time and this is the generation when all things will be fulfilled.   

I suspect that we will see even greater changes than we now experience and that they will occur more often.

 

The Traveler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, askandanswer said:

So do you think we might soon see some easing of restrictions on the ability to preach the godpel in Israel? 

There are no restrictions in Israel to preach the Gospel - except that it is not allowed to religions to solicit.  Anyone in Israel that wishes to learn of the restoration and be baptized is protected to do so under the law - Unless they are Museum and under the rule of the Museum Brotherhood. 

 

The Traveler

Edited by Traveler

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/26/2020 at 12:12 PM, Traveler said:

There are no restrictions in Israel to preach the Gospel - except that it is not allowed to religions to solicit.  Anyone in Israel that wishes to learn of the restoration and be baptized is protected to do so under the law - Unless they are Museum and under the rule of the Museum Brotherhood. 

 

The Traveler

DId your autocorrect mess that up? Is that Museum or Muslim?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now