The Two World Capitals During the Millennium
And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
D&C 133:20-21, 23-24
20 For behold, he shall stand upon the mount of Olivet, and upon the mighty ocean, even the great deep, and upon the islands of the sea, and upon the land of Zion.
21 And he shall utter his voice out of Zion, and he shall speak from Jerusalem, and his voice shall be heard among all people….
23 He shall command the great deep, and it shall be driven back into the north countries, and the islands shall become one land;
24 And the land of Jerusalem and the land of Zion shall be turned back into their own place, and the earth shall be like as it was in the days before it was divided.
James E. Talmage
When the people of the house of Jacob are prepared to receive the Redeemer as their rightful king, when the scattered sheep of Israel have been sufficiently humbled through suffering and sorrow to know and to follow their Shepherd, then, indeed, will He come to reign among them. Then a literal kingdom will be established, wide as the world, with the King of kings on the throne; and the two capitals of this mighty empire will be Jerusalem in the east and Zion in the west. Isaiah speaks of the glory of Christ’s kingdom in the latter days, and ascribes separately to Zion and to Jerusalem the blessings of triumph: “O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!” (Articles of Faith, p.346)
Orson F. Whitney (Quorum of the Twelve)
But Christ’s kingdom will have two capitals, one in the Old World, one in the New; “for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.” (Conference Report, October 1920, p.33)
Joseph Fielding Smith
TWO HOLY CITIES: ZION AND JERUSALEM. In this great day of gathering, the Lord has commanded that those of the house of Israel who are scattered among the Gentiles should flee unto Zion, and those who are of the house of Judah should flee unto Jerusalem, “unto the mountains of the Lord’s house,” which is their gathering place.
In each land a holy city shall be built which shall be the capital from whence the law and the word of the Lord shall go forth to all peoples. The Savior said to the Nephites: “Behold, this people will I establish in this land, unto the fulfilling of the covenant which I made with your father Jacob; and it shall be a New Jerusalem. And the powers of heaven shall be in the midst of this people; yea, even I will be in the midst of you.”
Moroni, writing of the Jaredites, has said: “Behold, Ether saw the days of Christ, and he spake concerning a New Jerusalem upon this land. And he spake also concerning the house of Israel, and the Jerusalem from whence Lehi should come — after it should be destroyed it should be built up again, a holy city unto the Lord; wherefore, it could not be a new Jerusalem for it had been in a time of old; but it should be built up again, and become a holy city of the Lord; and it should be built unto the house of Israel.”
TWO HOLY CITIES: JERUSALEM FIND NEW JERUSALEM. We are informed in the revelation given to Joseph Smith the Prophet, that the city of Zion and the New Jerusalem is one and the same. In a number of revelations the Lord speaks of the New Jerusalem which is to be built. For instance, we read: “And it shall be called the New Jerusalem, a land of peace, a city of refuge, a place of safety for the saints of the Most High God; And the glory of the Lord shall be there, and the terror of the Lord also shall be there, insomuch that the wicked will not come unto it, and it shall be called Zion.”
Also: “Yea, the word of the Lord concerning his church, established in the last days for the restoration of his people, as he has spoken by the mouth of his prophets, and for the gathering of his saints to stand upon Mount Zion, which shall be the city of New Jerusalem.”
Jerusalem of old, after the Jews have been cleansed and sanctified from all their sin, shall become a holy city where the Lord shall dwell and from whence he shall send forth his word unto all people. Likewise, on this continent, the city of Zion, New Jerusalem, shall be built and from it the law of God shall also go forth. There will be no conflict, for each city shall be headquarters for the Redeemer of the world, and from each he shall send forth his proclamations as occasion may require. Jerusalem shall be the gathering place of Judah and his fellows of the house of Israel, and Zion shall be the gathering place of Ephraim and his fellows, upon whose heads shall be conferred “the richer blessings.”
ZION AND JERUSALEM SEPARATE CITIES. Many prophecies in the Bible refer to Jerusalem and to Zion as separate places. It is evident that these references do not apply to the hill Zion which is a part of the city of Jerusalem. Among these predictions we cite the following:
“O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!”
“The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; . . . So shall ye know that I am the Lord your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.”
In Isaiah, Zion and Jerusalem are called cities: “Thy holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.” Isaiah and other prophets also predict that headquarters for Zion in the last days should be established in the mountains, and people from all nations should say: “Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”
ZION AND JERUSALEM: TWO WORLD CAPITALS. When Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon, he learned that America is the land of Zion which was given to Joseph and his children and that on this land the City Zion, or New Jerusalem, is to be built. He also learned that Jerusalem in Palestine is to be rebuilt and become a holy city. These two cities, one in the land of Zion and one in Palestine, are to become capitals for the kingdom of God during the millennium.
In the meantime, while the work of preparation is going on and Israel is being gathered, many people are coming to the land of Zion saying: “Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob.” The Latter-day Saints are fulfilling this prediction, since they are being gathered from all parts of the earth and are coming to the house of the Lord in these valleys of the mountains. Here they are being taught in the ways of the Lord through the restoration of the gospel and by receiving blessings in the temples now erected. Moreover, before many years have passed away, the Lord will command the building of the City Zion, and Jerusalem in Palestine will in due time be cleansed and become a holy city and the habitation of the Jews after they are cleansed and are willing to accept Jesus Christ as their Redeemer.
TEMPLES IN ZION AND JERUSALEM. “And righteousness will I send down out of heaven; and truth will I send forth out of the earth, to bear testimony of mine Only Begotten; his resurrection from the dead; yea, and also the resurrection of all men; and righteousness and truth will I cause to sweep the earth as with a flood, to gather out mine elect from the four quarters of the earth, unto a place which I shall prepare, an Holy City, that my people may gird their loins, and be looking forth for the time of my coming; for there shall be my tabernacle and it shall be called Zion, a New Jerusalem.
“And the Lord said unto Enoch: Then shalt thou and all thy city meet them there, and we will receive them into our bosom, and they shall see us; and we will fall upon their necks, and they shall fall upon our necks, and we will kiss each other; And there shall be mine abode, and it shall be Zion, which shall come forth out of all the creations which I have made; and for the space of a thousand years the earth shall rest.”
When Christ comes in fulfillment of this promise, there will be on the earth two great cities made holy with holy sanctuaries, or temples. One will be the city of Jerusalem in the land of Judah, which shall be rebuilt; the other the city Zion, or the New Jerusalem, in the land of Joseph. (Doctrines of Salvation, 3:68-72)
Bruce R. McConkie
First, Israel shall gather to prepare for the Second Coming of the Son of Man; she shall gather to Zion in all nations; she shall gather into the stakes created everywhere among all peoples. “I will gather my people together as a man gathereth his sheaves into the floor,” was the promise of the Risen Lord to his Nephite sheep. “And it shall come to pass that I will establish my people, O house of Israel.” This is the gathering that is now going on. And every gathering place, for the scattered remnants who there assemble, becomes to them as a New Jerusalem. It becomes a City of Holiness, a place where they can worship the Father in spirit and in truth, a place where temples are available in which they may receive the fulness of the priesthood, a place where no blessing is denied them.
Then, before the Second Coming, gathered Judah, as directed by Ephraim, shall build up anew the Old Jerusalem and prepare therein a holy temple; and gathered Ephraim, aided by Manasseh, shall build a New Jerusalem in an American Zion and prepare therein a holy temple. It is to these two temples in particular that the Lord shall come at his glorious return, and it is from these two cities – Zion in America and Jerusalem in Old Canaan – that the governance and worship of the world will be directed. Thus Jesus, continuing his preaching to the Nephites, said: “And behold, this people” – this Lehite remnant of Israel – will I establish in this land, unto the fulfilling of the covenant which I made with your father Jacob; and it shall be a New Jerusalem. Jacob is Israel, and Israel is the one with whom the Lord made covenant that his seed should inherit the blessings of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel. “And the powers of heaven shall be in the midst of this people; yea, even I will be in the midst of you.” (3 Nephi 20:18, 21-22.) After gathered Israel builds the New Jerusalem, the Lord will come and dwell with his people.
The building of these two world capitals will commence before the Second Coming and continue during the Millennium. Classifying scattered Israel as Gentiles, because they are not nationals of the kingdom of Judah (the Jews), the Lord Jesus said: “If they will repent and hearken unto my words, and harden not their hearts, I will establish my church among them, and they shall come in unto the covenant and be numbered among this the remnant of Jacob, unto whom I have given this land for their inheritance.” We are the ones here named; the gospel spoken of came through Joseph Smith; we are of the house of Joseph to whom the land of America has been given as an inheritance, even as it was given to the Nephite portion of Joseph’s seed. “And they [the Latter-day Saints] shall assist my people, the remnant of Jacob, and also as many of the house of Israel as shall come, that they may build a city, which shall be called the New Jerusalem.” Israel – all gathered remnants assisting each other – shall build the New Jerusalem in America.
“And then shall they [that Israel which builds the New Jerusalem] assist my people that they may be gathered in, who are scattered upon all the face of the land, in unto the New Jerusalem. And then shall the power of heaven come down among them; and I also will be in the midst.” Israel gathers; the New Jerusalem is built; Israel continues to gather; and the Lord comes to reign personally in the midst of his people. Then an even greater gathering takes place, which includes the restoration of the Ten Tribes to the lands of their inheritance. Then when the Lord is in the midst of his people, “shall the work of the Father commence at that day, even when this gospel shall be preached among the remnant of this people. Verily I say unto you, at that day shall the work of the Father commence among all the dispersed of my people, yea, even the tribes which have been lost, which the Father hath led away out of Jerusalem.” (3 Nephi 21:22-26.) (A New Witness for the Articles of Faith, p.587-588)