Elder Bruce R. McConkie gave an important talk in Peru that President Kimball requested to be printed in the Ensign. It is entitled, "Come Let Israel Build Zion." For the full text of the talk click here. In this talk he outlined the three phases in which Zion would be built:
“The gathering of Israel and the establishment of Zion in the latter days is divided into three periods or phases. The first phase is past; we are now living in the second phase; and the third lies ahead. . . .
“Phase I—From the First Vision, the setting up of the kingdom on April 6, 1830, and the coming of Moses on April 3, 1836, to the secure establishment of the Church in the United States and Canada, a period of about 125 years.
“Phase II—From the creation of stakes of Zion in overseas areas, beginning in the 1950s, to the second coming of the Son of Man, a period of unknown duration.
“Phase III—From our Lord’s second coming until the kingdom is perfected and the knowledge of God covers the earth as the waters cover the sea, and from then until the end of the Millennium, a period of 1,000 years.” (“Come: Let Israel Build Zion,” p. 115.)
Elder McConkie further explained:
“As of now, the Lord has laid upon us the responsibility to lay the foundation for that which is to be. We have been commissioned to prepare a people for the second coming of the Son of Man. We have been called to preach the gospel to every nation and kindred and tongue and people. We have been commanded to lay the foundations of Zion and to get all things ready for the return of Him who shall again crown the Holy city with his presence and glory. . . .
“Stakes of Zion are . . . being organized at the ends of the earth. . . . A stake of Zion is a part of Zion. You cannot create a stake of Zion without creating a part of Zion. Zion is the pure in heart; we gain purity of heart by baptism and by obedience. A stake has geographical boundaries. To create a stake is like founding a City of Holiness. Every stake on earth is the gathering place for the lost sheep of Israel who live in its area.
“The gathering place for Peruvians is in the stakes of Zion in Peru, or in the places which soon will become stakes. The gathering place for Chileans is in Chile; for Bolivians it is in Bolivia; for Koreans it is in Korea; and so it goes through all the length and breadth of the earth. Scattered Israel in every nation is called to gather to the fold of Christ, to the stakes of Zion, as such are established in their nations. . . .
“That is to say—Israel shall be gathered one by one, family by family, unto the stakes of Zion established in all parts of the earth so that the whole earth shall be blessed with the fruits of the gospel.
“This then is the counsel of the Brethren: Build up Zion, but build it up in the area where God has given you birth and nationality. Build it up where he has given you citizenship, family, and friends. . . . The Saints who comprise [any] part of Zion are and should be a leavening influence for good in all these nations.
“And know this: God will bless that nation which so orders its affairs as to further his work.” (“Come: Let Israel Build Zion,” pp. 116, 118.)
Tomorrow night (Thursday, October 1) in our Doctrine and Covenants Class we will be discussing Section 98. The following presentation will be helpful in the discussion. Please print it and bring it too the class,
(click on image to enlarge)