D&C 27:5-14 “The Hour Cometh”
After revealing what is important—and what is not—in relation to the ordinance of the sacrament (see verse 2), the Lord teaches Joseph Smith about a future event that will involve the sacrament. Jesus had also foretold this event when He initiated the sacrament among His disciples the evening before His death, on the occasion of the Last Supper (see Matthew 26:29; Luke 22:18). Following are some of the specifics of this sacred, prophesied event:
- The Savior will come to the earth and will “drink of the fruit of the vine with you [Joseph Smith]” (D&C 27:5). Most commentators and quotes from the Brethren call this a future “sacrament meeting,” to be held at a place in Missouri known as Adam-ondi-Ahman (see D&C 115).
- In addition to Joseph Smith, others in attendance at this meeting will include Moroni, Elias (possibly referring to Noah; see LDS Bible Dictionary, “Elias”), John the Baptist, Elijah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Adam, Peter, James, and John (verses 5-14). Surely many others will also be included in this great event.
- There is no official Church statement, but this event is widely considered to be a major prelude to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Whether Church members in general will also be in attendance (or even aware of this meeting) is not entirely clear (although, see verse 14), and commentaries are not in agreement.
We truly believe in and look forward to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ and are called upon to do our part in helping prepare the world. For example, speaking in the women’s session of the October 2020 general conference, President Henry B. Eyring said, “Every day, we are approaching closer to the glorious moment when the Savior Jesus Christ will come to earth again. We know something of the terrible events that will precede His coming, yet our hearts swell with joy and confidence also, knowing of the glorious promises that will be fulfilled before He returns…. You will play a crucial part in the grand times ahead…. You will be an essential force in the gathering of Israel and in the creation of a Zion people” (Ensign, Nov. 2020, p. 67).
Elder Neil L. Andersen added, “While we do not know when He will come, the events of His return will be breathtaking!… Can you imagine being caught up to meet Him? … that is His promise to the righteous” (Ensign, Nov. 2020, p. 91).
And President Russell M. Nelson ended this same conference by saying, “May we go forward together to fulfill our divine mandate—that of preparing ourselves and the world for the Second Coming of the Lord” (Ensign, Nov. 2020, p. 119).
D&C 27:15-18 Spiritual Armor
Verse 15 begins, “Wherefore,” which connects the previous verses to those that follow. In other words, because of the anticipated coming of the Lord and events which will precede it, the Lord tells us, “Wherefore, lift up your hearts and rejoice” (verse 15). Is your heart lifted up as you anticipate and prepare yourself and others for the Savior’s coming? Do today’s events and those of the future cause you to rejoice? As we strive to take upon ourselves God’s “whole armor,” let us consider:
- To “gird up your loins” means to prepare for physical activity (such as running or performing hard labor) by pulling up and tucking in the traditional tunic (long robe) with the girdle (belt), so that your clothes don’t toss around and inhibit you (see also Luke 12:35; Ephesians 6:14; 1 Peter 1:13).
- We “gird up” and put on our armor today in order to fight for the Lord in what He calls “the evil day.”
- We are fighting in a spiritual battle in which our preparation and armor will allow us to “be able to stand.”
Find what each of the following represents (for example, being “girt about” is to have “truth” in our lives).
- The breastplate:
- The shoes (having our feet “shod”):
- The shield:
- The helmet:
- The sword:
Some commentators have compared these items to elements of today’s temple endowment ceremony. Another interpretation was given by President Harold B. Lee: “We have the four parts of the body…. The loins, typifying virtue, chastity. The heart, typifying our conduct. Our feet, our goals or objectives in life, and finally our head, our thoughts” (Feet Shod with the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace, Brigham Young University Speeches of the Year, Nov. 9, 1954; emphasis added).
To all these the Lord adds in verse 18, “and my word which I reveal unto you.” How does the word of God “arm” you? What are the various ways in which you hear His word?
D&C 28:1-7, 10-14 Who Is Appointed?
After receiving Section 27, Joseph and Emma Smith once again left Pennsylvania because of persecution, and returned to Fayette, New York, where Section 28 was given. This revelation teaches invaluable doctrine regarding God’s revelations, with principles that continue to guide us and our leaders today. A quote from the journal of Newel Knight helps us see how much trouble the false revelations of Hiram Page had caused in the young church: “On my arrival [in Fayette] I found Brother Joseph in great distress of mind…. [Hiram Page] had quite a roll of papers full of these revelations, and many in the Church were led astray by them…. Here was a chance for Satan to work among the little flock, and he sought by this means to accomplish what persecution failed to do. Joseph was perplexed and scarcely knew how to meet this new exigency” (in Doctrine and Covenants Institute Student Manual, p. 57). This revelation provides the following:
- In verse 1 the Lord directs Himself to Oliver Cowdery, who had been one of those who was deceived by Hiram Page (who was Oliver’s brother-in-law).
- Go through verses 1-7, 10-13 and make a list of things the Lord said he approves, and a list of what He said He does not approve. What else do you see in these verses that can help us today?
- It is heartening to know that after being made aware of the Lord’s words, Hiram Page repented and renounced the false revelations which he had claimed to receive.
- Think about “order” in the Church (verse 13). What does this revelation add to the ongoing latter-day Restoration?
D&C 28:8-9, 15-16 Oliver’s Mission
Next, the Lord directs that Oliver Cowdery is to “go unto the Lamanites and preach my gospel unto them” (verse 8). In this case, Lamanites referred to the native American Indians who were in Missouri and surrounding areas.
- The location of the future “city of Zion” was one of the things Hiram Page had claimed to receive by revelation. But what did the Lord say about this in verse 9? (The Lord fully revealed the location ten months later, in Section 57.)
- How would you apply verse 15 to full-time missionaries today? How do you apply it to your life?
- What are your thoughts and feelings about the Lord’s commandment in verse 16? How do you interpret His words, “with the sound of rejoicing”?