What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
We have many warnings about what will happen (and what is happening) in the last days. We are in the thick of it right now. There is ample scriptural prophecy about what is to come.
Are the prophecies in the scriptures sufficient? I think not—that is the beauty and blessing of modern revelation. We have a Prophet today who will warn us, if and when necessary, about things we need to do to prepare for what is to come.
For example, we already have a few things we’re supposed to be doing to prepare, so that we “shall not fear”:
- Store a year’s supply of food (and fuel)
- Get out of debt
- Repent of our sins, cultivate the spirit, and create our own “Zion in the midst of Babylon“
But is that enough? Should we, in our own studies, actively be aware of and prepare for what is to come? Should we look to other sources (W. Cleon Skousen, Ken Bowers, mainstream media, blogs, friends and family) for additional information on what is to come, and how to prepare for it?
It’s no surprise, to those that read my blog, that I try to be aware of what is “at our doorstep”. I believe there are secret combinations. I believe there is a “shadow government”, men who are really in control of world and national affairs. I believe that the Book of Mormon warns us of these things, and it is part of the very important message it testifies of.
Alma, in counseling Helaman, said:
And now, I will speak unto you concerning those twenty-four plates, that ye keep them, that the mysteries and the works of darkness, and their secret works, or the secret works of those people who have been destroyed, may be made manifest unto this people; yea, all their murders, and robbings, and their plunderings, and all their wickedness and abominations, may be made manifest unto this people. (Alma 37:21)
Obviously, Alma wanted these secret works of darkness taught (but not the oaths and covenants associated with them) so that the people might be aware.
If one should wish to study and be aware of the secret works of darkness in our day, I feel it becomes necessary to not only read prophetic scripture, but also the writings of men who have researched the topic. Scripture documents past experience, with lessons and insights for future application. Rarely does it prophecy with specificity what exactly will happen in the future, how it will occur, who will be responsible for it, and what timeline it will adhere to. For that, one must investigate the writings of those who have studied and researched the ongoings of our own day.
But what is the litmus test for who we listen to? Whose book do we read and believe? Whose lecture do we attend and think to be true? We have been warned:
For in those days there shall also arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch, that, if possible, they shall deceive the very elect, who are the elect according to the covenant.
And whoso treasureth up my word, shall not be deceived… (JS-M 1:22,37)
We who hold the priesthood of God are the “elect according to the covenenant”. Satan will go (and is going) to great lengths to deceive us. One of his biggest tactics is to try to convince people that he doesn’t exist, and that there is no hell (see 2 Nephi 28:21-23)—all in an effort to lull people into carnal security, thinking that “all is well”.
I think we should study these things. I think we should listen to a prophet of the Lord who has previously warned and counseled us. I think we should take “conspiracy theories” (or as Pres. Benson liked to call them, “conspiracy facts”) with a grain of salt, but not altogether reject them. And I think, with moderation in all things, that we should not only try to not be deceived by others, but also not deceive ourselves:
Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. (1 Cor. 3:18)
In our quest to prepare for that which is to come, we must be weary of who we believe. We must seek wisdom, but be humble (and a “fool”) throughout the process. We must have the spirit of discernment to sift through the information, and judge righteously as to what is true and what is not.
If we are prepared, we shall not fear.