…VAN EEN VERNUFTIGE MAKELIJ…
(1 Nephi 18:1)
THE GREAT APOSTACY
During my first mission, missionaries always had a large hurdle to cross when teaching new investigators. We had to explain that an apostasy took place, and as a result of that apostasy, none of the present day churches are entirely correct. PMG establishes this concept in a powerful way. Even the reformers did not profess to be called by God as prophets, but on the contrary, attempted to only reform doctrine which they considered to have been changed. We spent considerable time teaching the doctrine of the great apostasy and that it, along with the restoration of the fullness of the gospel in the latter days, were truly prophesied by all the prophets of old. I have observed that people in Belgium and Holland are not as concerned today with the doctrine of the apostasy. It may be only my perception or that most people no longer have strong ties to churches they consider to be true. But, I still love and find value to review scripture verses predicting the apostasy.
People will be drunken and stagger but not with strong drink. For the Lord will pour out upon the world the spirit of deep sleep. The world’s eyes will be closed and the prophets and rulers will be covered.
The Lord will make the earth empty and a waste place that is utterly emptied and utterly spoiled. The earth and haughty people will languish. This is because the inhabitants of the earth have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinances and broken the everlasting covenant.
Darkness shall cover the earth and gross darkness shall cover the people.
His people have forsaken him, the fountain of living waters, and have hewed out broken cisterns that can hold no water.
The Lord will send a famine in the land, not of bread or thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. People will wander from sea to sea and from the north to the east and shall run to and fro to seek the word of the lord and shall not find it.
The gospel shall be preached in the entire world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Jesus Christ organized and established his church when he lived on the earth. After his death the church was managed by the apostles through revelation from Christ as it was set up to do. But, the signs of apostasy began to show up in the original church and the Apostles continued to prophesy that the great apostasy would happen.
Paul said he knew that after his departing grievous wolves shall enter among you and not spare the flock. Men within will arise speaking perverse things and draw away disciples.
Paul marvels that the people are so soon removed to another gospel.
2 Thess. 2:3
Regarding the return of Christ, that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first.
1 Tim. 4:1-4
In the latter times some shall depart from the faith giving heed to seducing spirits…
2 Tim. 3:1-7
In the last days perilous times shall come. Men shall be …unthankful, unholy…and have a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof.
2 Tim. 4:2-4
The time will come when people will not endure sound doctrine. They shall turn away their ears from the truth and which shall be turned into fables.
John the beloved said, in the last days an angel flying in heaven will have the everlasting gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth.
Elders and Sisters, in John’s vision, the gospel was not on the earth but in the heavens and will be proclaimed by an angel to every nation, kindred, tongue and people. It is a privilege to belong to the only church in these latter days that professes such an event and accepts the great apostasy as a factual fulfilling of prophesies.