- Zion is both a place and a people. Zion was the name given to the ancient city of Enoch in the days before the Flood.
The opposite of Zion is Babylon.
- The antithesis and antagonist of Zion is Babylon. The city of Babylon was originally Babel, of Tower of Babel fame, and later became the capital of the Babylonian empire.
Referring to the Zion people, Elder Christofferson says:
- And so today the Lord’s people are gathering “out from among the nations” as they gather into the congregations and stakes of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that are scattered throughout the nations.
He speaks of the early Saints not being worthy to build the temple in Missouri. He speaks of the things of the world being more important to these Saints but warns us that we are not much different today.
- Rather than judge these early Saints too harshly, however, we should look to ourselves to see if we are doing any better. Zion is Zion because of the character, attributes, and faithfulness of her citizens. If we would establish Zion in our homes, branches, wards, and stakes, we must rise to this standard.
He speaks of the attributes that the Saints need to have in order for us to establish Zion in our homes.
- It will be necessary (1) to become unified in one heart and one mind; (2) to become, individually and collectively, a holy people; and (3) to care for the poor and needy with such effectiveness that we eliminate poverty among us. We cannot wait until Zion comes for these things to happen—Zion will come only as they happen.
Of these three attributes he says:
- Are we individually and as a people free from strife and contention and united “according to the union required by the law of the celestial kingdom”? ( D&C 105:4 ). Forgiveness of one another is essential to this unity.
- We will become of one heart and one mind as we individually place the Savior at the center of our lives and follow those He has commissioned to lead us.
- To come to Zion, it is not enough for you or me to be somewhat less wicked than others. We are to become not only good but holy men and women. Recalling Elder Neal A. Maxwell’s phrase, let us once and for all establish our residence in Zion and give up the summer cottage in Babylon (see Neal A. Maxwell, A Wonderful Flood of Light , 47).
CARING FOR THE POOL
- As we pursue the cause of Zion, each of us should prayerfully consider whether we are doing what we should and all that we should in the Lord’s eyes with respect to the poor and the needy.
- Materialism is just one more manifestation of the idolatry and pride that characterize Babylon. Perhaps we can learn to be content with what is sufficient for our needs.
We need to establish Zion by making our homes a Zion like environment. Teaching our families to be united, holy, and charitable are required for us to be a people that the Lord can call His. With these guidelines, I need to focus on making my home a place where we think less about what we don't have and more grateful for what we do have. We have the gospel of Jesus Christ and we should establish our homes to reflect the truth we have.