Q&A: Questions and Answers

    “Q&A: Questions and Answers,” New Era, May 2006, 16–18

    Questions and Answers

    Responses are intended for help and perspective, not as pronouncements of Church doctrine.

    How do I prepare for the Second Coming?

    New Era

    • Ask yourself, “If the Savior were to come tomorrow, what would I do to prepare?” Then, each day, do the simple things you know you should.

    • Repent daily so you can be worthy to partake of the sacrament each week. Do all you can to feel and follow the promptings of the Spirit.

    • Since no one knows the hour of the Second Coming, it is silly to speculate about when it might be or to give up because of worry.

    • Even though trials and difficult events will precede the Savior’s return, there is no need to fear if you are prepared. Be happy, work hard, and keep the commandments.

    The short answer is, “By living the gospel today.” The way you prepare for the Second Coming is the same way you prepare for baptism and confirmation, for the priesthood, for womanhood, for the temple, for a mission, for this life, and for the next life. You do all that you can each day to follow the Spirit, to become more like the Savior, and to prepare to return to live with Him and with Heavenly Father.

    You prepare for the Second Coming by doing the simple things you know you should each day, the things that keep you in the strait and narrow way (see Matt. 7:13–14). As the scriptures say, you keep at it. You continue to “press forward” (see 2 Ne. 31:19–21). Repent when you need to so you can be worthy each week to partake of the sacrament.

    Since no one knows the hour of the Second Coming, it is silly to guess when it might be (see Matt. 24:36, 42, 44). You also shouldn’t worry that there isn’t enough time remaining to live a full life. Even though there will be trials and difficult events prior to the Savior’s return, “if ye are prepared ye shall not fear” (D&C 38:30; see Gordon B. Hinckley, “If Ye Are Prepared Ye Shall Not Fear,” Ensign, Nov. 2005, 60).

    Among the things the Savior gave to guide us in preparation for His return are His parables. In the parable of the ten virgins, five were prepared because they had oil in their lamps, and five were unprepared (see Matt. 25:1–13). We need to be like the wise women who were prepared with oil in their lamps, rather than assuming we can prepare at the last minute.

    In another parable, the Savior said that those living just prior to His Second Coming would see indications that His return was near, the same way that those looking at a fig tree can tell what season it is (see Matt. 24:32–33). And in another parable, the Lord tells of a faithful servant who was simply doing his duty when his master came (see Matt. 24:45–46).

    If we do our duty—if we live the gospel, keep the commandments, and listen to and follow the living prophets—then we will be prepared for the Second Coming. Through our righteous actions, we will become more like the Savior so that “when he shall appear, we shall be like him” (1 Jn. 3:2). Then, with the faithful, we will “be looking forth for the great day of the Lord to come,” and will see “signs and wonders, for they shall be shown forth in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath” (see D&C 45:39–44).

    Jesus Christ has promised, “I will come; and they shall see me in the clouds of heaven, clothed with power and great glory; with all the holy angels” (D&C 45:44). It will be a great day for those who follow Him.

    Elder Dallin H. Oaks

    “What if the day of His coming were tomorrow? … what would we do today? What confessions would we make? What practices would we discontinue? What accounts would we settle? What forgivenesses would we extend? What testimonies would we bear?
    “If we would do those things then, why not now?”
    —Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Preparation for the Second Coming,” Ensign, May 2004, 9.


    “I can live worthy to always have the Holy Ghost guide me. I can look to the prophet for guidance and follow his counsel. Then I will look forward to the Savior’s coming with happiness and not with fear. As a missionary I teach my investigators to prepare for the Savior’s Second Coming by accepting the teachings of the gospel and making them part of their lives.”
    Sister Eno-obong Umoren Wilson, 21, Ghana Accra Mission

    “I always strive to emulate the actions, thoughts, and motives of the Savior. I pray for His love, that I can feel that same love for others. I try faithfully and willingly to do what He asks, and to live with the eternal goal in mind.”
    Kaylie C., 17, California

    “A great way to know what’s going to happen during the Second Coming is to simply read all you can find in the scriptures and in the words of the prophets and apostles. To prepare yourself personally for it, you must keep the commandments, so when you find the Savior has come, you will be numbered with the righteous.”
    Andrea M., 14, Arizona

    “The most important thing we can do in this short time of our lives here on earth is to prepare. We must do this by being baptized, repenting, preparing for the temple, spreading His words, having knowledge of the scriptures, and serving Him.”
    Megan R., 15, Pennsylvania

    “Start preparing today. Imagine that the Savior will come tomorrow, and ask yourself, ‘What would I want to do to prepare for and be worthy of the celestial kingdom when Christ comes again?’”
    Alec B., 14, Utah

    “Remember the parable of the ten virgins. Collect oil as much as possible by studying the scriptures, praying always, and listening to the General Authorities. If we apply all the things we have learned from the gospel in our lives, we will be prepared. Just look forward to it.”
    Elder Mark Hancock, 19, Michigan Detroit Mission

    “We should let go of any activities that take us away from the Church and the gospel of Christ.”
    Levi B., 18, Washington

    “Since we don’t know the exact time when Christ will come, we should live worthily, so that if He comes tomorrow, we will be ready. Don’t worry so much about when He will come, but instead about whether you are ready for Him to come.”
    Maren E., 15, Utah

    “When we have the Holy Ghost with us, we will not have the spirit of fear, but the spirit of courage and faith. We need to make sure that we are clean and worthy so that we can be ready at any time for the Savior to come. By studying the Savior’s life in the scriptures, we will know Him when He comes.”
    Brigham N., 18, Arizona

    Photograph by Christina Smith, posed by models