Why Do Some Latter-day Saints Flock to False Prophets of Doom?

Why Do Some Latter-day Saints Flock to False Prophets of Doom?

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Why Do Some Latter-day Saints Flock to False Prophets of Doom?
(Image via ldsmag.com)

(Meridian Magazine; Maurine Proctor)

Last week the LDS Church officially distanced itself from author Julie Rowe’s book, A Greater Tomorrow on a page directed to institute and seminary teachers under the heading “Spurious Materials in Circulation.”

It read “Although Sister Rowe is an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, her book is not endorsed by the Church and should not be recommended to students or used as a resource in teaching them. The experiences she shares are her own personal experiences and do not necessarily reflect Church doctrine or they may distort Church doctrine.”

In this rousing book, which has garnered over 250 reviews on Amazon, most of them five star and laudatory, Rowe devotes considerable time to the coming bad times—which she suggests are imminent–and the mass evacuation of Mormons and other peoples of faith to form tent cities as places of refuge.

She says there will be “hundreds” of tent cities, “many dozens” of places of refuge, and about six cities of light (p. 61) heavily concentrated in North America but especially in Utah. The time to prepare to live in these tent cities is now and people should watch for special instructions from their leaders.

Various types of severe destruction are described including earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis and plagues. People will be exposed to biological warfare and the dreaded EMP. The Statue of Liberty will be halfway submerged on a sinking island.

Periodically in the book, the author says she knows much more in detail but is prevented from disclosing it because the Lord will not give her permission.

The Church’s Official Statement

Other prophecies of doom are in full flower on the Internet as well just now. Jonathan Cahn has promoted in his book The Harbinger that 13 September 2015 was to be a day of financial crisis and stock market upheaval. The fourth Blood Moon, which fell on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles, Sept. 27, was also considered a sign of disaster.

This has caused enough worry among some that the LDS Church issued an official statement:

“The Church encourages our members to be spiritually and physically prepared for life’s ups and downs. For many decades, Church leaders have counseled members that, where possible, they should gradually build a supply of food, water and financial resources to ensure they are self-reliant during disasters and the normal hardships that are part of life, including illness, injury or unemployment.

This teaching to be self-reliant has been accompanied by the counsel of Church leaders to avoid being caught up in extreme efforts to anticipate catastrophic events. 

“The writings and speculations of individual Church members, some of which have gained currency recently, should be considered as personal accounts or positions that do not reflect Church doctrine.”

Hard Times

In reality, we hardly need these portents of gloom, these soothsayers of misery. We can see the instability in our economy, the 18 trillion dollars of U.S. debt, the volatility of the Middle East, the threat of Isis, the assault upon religious freedom, the persecution of Christians, the new aggression of Russia, the spiraling morality of society, the unfeeling sacrifice of our unborn.

It is clear that some of the prophecies of the last days are already happening in some regions of the world. Hunger, wars and rumors of wars, earthquakes are a part of what many people already know. Ask Syrians right now about last-day styles calamity. Their world is imploding.

But the world has often been in severe crisis. Our parents and grandparents saw World War l shatter Europe, knew the hunger and panic of the Great Depression. They watched a mad man with genocidal aims take over one of the most civilized and cultured countries in Europe and then sweep across the continent conquering everything in his wake.

I remember seeing a sign over the drinking fountain in Winston Churchill’s underground secret war room reminding those who worked there that the fate of Western, Christian civilization was in their hands. That was not an exaggeration. It was.

So times have been tough—and maybe much tougher before.

Read the rest of this article at Meridian Magazine


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