The Time Shall Come

A Way of Life, L. Whitney Clayton

Daniel was a Hebrew slave in Babylon. He was given the opportunity to interpret King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream. Daniel asked God to reveal to him the dream and its interpretation, and his prayer was answered. He told Nebuchadnezzar, “There is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days. … The visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these.” Daniel said the king had seen a frightening image with a head, torso, arms, legs, and feet. A stone was cut out of a mountain without hands and rolled forth, gradually growing in size. That stone collided with the image, breaking it into pieces, “and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.”

Daniel explained that the image represented future political kingdoms and that “in the days of [those future] kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: … but it shall break” these kingdoms into pieces and consume them. “And it shall stand for ever.”1

We now go to more recent times. The angel Moroni first appeared to Joseph Smith in 1823 and told him “that God had a work for [him] to do; and that [his] name should be had for good and evil among all nations, kindreds, and tongues.”2 Moroni’s message surely must have astonished Joseph, who was just 17.

In 1831, the Lord told Joseph that the keys of the kingdom of God had again been “committed unto man on the earth.” He said the “gospel [would] roll forth unto the ends of the earth, as the stone which is cut out of the mountain without hands … , until it has filled the whole earth,”3 just as Daniel had told Nebuchadnezzar.

In 1898, President Wilford Woodruff recounted an experience he had as a new member in 1834 at a priesthood meeting in Kirtland. He related: “The Prophet called on all who held the Priesthood to gather into the little log school house they had there. It was a small house, perhaps 14 feet square. … When we got together the Prophet called upon the Elders of Israel … to bear testimony of this work. … When they got through the Prophet said, ‘Brethren I have been very much edified and instructed in your testimonies here tonight, but I want to say to you before the Lord, that you know no more concerning the destinies of this Church and kingdom than a babe upon its mother’s lap. You don’t comprehend it. … It is only a little handfull of Priesthood you see here tonight, but this Church will fill North and South America—it will fill the world.’”4

Excerpt from Elder L. Whitney Clayton’s October 2011 General Conference Address, The Time Shall Come. Elder L. Whitney Clayton is a Member Of the Presidency of the Seventy of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. View Elder L. Whitney Clayton’s full address here.