This is my opinion.
The last days...

We live in the last days....the last days before the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. The signs of the times show us that the time draws nearer. There are many calamaties and plagues and there is much death and destruction happening on the Earth today. Nevertheless, it is a great time to be alive. There is no era in the history of the Earth that I'd rather live. What a blessing to enjoy the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and to be a member of the only true church of Christ! What a privelage to be a part of building His kingdom here on Earth! I like to study the sciences and I like technology. I feel it's a blessing to enjoy all the technological advances of this modern world. I can remember when the VCRs and microwaves came out, for example, and when personal computers became popular. Many of the inventions we do enjoy came about by the inspiration of God. The devil, however, always finds ways to take those inventions and advancements and use them to destroy men. The internet, for example, is a source of great information and learning but it can also house a great amount of hate and filthiness. The battle that occured in heaven before the birth of man continues today here on Earth...good vs. evil! What side will I be on?....I strive to be as righteous as I can be.

Miracles!

While there are many bad things happening in these last days there are also many good things happening as well. "For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my first-born in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility." (2 Nephi 2:11) There are many miracles being performed and as the world's wickedness increases so does the influence of God. It is as Nebuchadnezar's dream (Daniel 2) of the stone cut out of the mountain without hands that grew as it rolled down and filled the whole Earth. Such is the kingdom of God and it is happening now! We are a part of it! The miracle being performed today in an ever increasing number is the gathering of Isreal as foretold by the prophets of old. The repentance process of an individual making a 180 degree turn-around to follow Christ is a miracle!

The American continent.

The American continent was prepared by the hand of God in order to prepare the world for the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Columbus was a God-inspired man who found the New World (the promised land)..."And I looked and beheld a man among the Gentiles, who was separated from the seed of my brethren by the many waters; and I beheld the Spirit of God, that it came down and wrought upon the man; and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land." (1 Nephi 13:12) The Spirit of the Lord was upon our forefathers who did "humble themselves before the Lord; and the power of the Lord was with them." (1 Nephi 13:16) "And I beheld that the power of God was with them, and also that the wrath of God was upon all those that were gathered together against them to battle. And I, Nephi, beheld that the Gentiles that had gone our of captivity were delivered by the power of God out of the hands of all other nations." (1 Nephi 13:18,19)

The Church of the Devil

There is some debate as to what is the church of the devil as mentioned in the Book of Mormon. From my experience in the mission field and through my personal study of the scriptures and other documents, my opinion is that the Church of the Devil is both one church in particular and also all churches other that the Church of Christ. In 1 Nephi 13, Nephi referes to "a great and abominable church which is most abominable above all other churches" that has altered the Bible in order to blind men. "Wherefore, these things go forth from the Jews in purity unto the Gentiles, according to the truth which is in God. And after they go forth by the hand of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, from the Jews unto the Gentiles, thou seest the formation of that great and abominable church, which is most abominable above all other churches; for behold, they have taken away from the gospel of the Lamb many parts which are plain and most precious; and also many covenants of the Lord have they taken away. And all this have they done that they might pervert the right ways of the Lord, that they might blind the eyes and harden the hearts of the children of men. Wherefore, thou seest that after the book hath gone forth through the hands of the great and abominable church, that there are many plain and precious things taken away from the book, which is the book of the Lamb of God. And after these plain and precious things were taken away it goeth forth unto all the nations of the Gentiles; and after it goeth forth unto all the nations of the Gentiles, yea, even across the many waters which thou hast seen with the Gentiles which have gone forth out of captivity, thou seest—because of the many plain and precious things which have been taken out of the book, which were plain unto the understanding of the children of men, according to the plainness which is in the Lamb of God—because of these things which are taken away out of the gospel of the Lamb, an exceedingly great many do stumble, yea, insomuch that Satan hath great power over them." (1 Nephi 13:25-29) Through my studies of history and my personal experiences I believe this refers to the Catholic church. Then in 1 Nephi 14, the Lord states that in reality there are only 2 churches, one of Christ and one of the devil..."And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth. And it came to pass that I looked and beheld the whore of all the earth, and she sat upon many waters; and she had dominion over all the earth, among all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people." (1 Nephi 14:10-11) Today, it is a spiritual battle that ensues between the Church of Christ and the Church of the Devil..."And it came to pass that I beheld the church of the Lamb of God, and its numbers were few, because of the wickedness and abominations of the whore who sat upon many waters; nevertheless, I beheld that the church of the Lamb, who were the saints of God, were also upon all the face of the earth; and their dominions upon the face of the earth were small, because of the wickedness of the great whore whom I saw. And it came to pass that I beheld that the great mother of abominations did gather together multitudes upon the face of all the earth, among all the nations of the Gentiles, to fight against the Lamb of God. And it came to pass that I, Nephi, beheld the power of the Lamb of God, that it descended upon the saints of the church of the Lamb, and upon the covenant people of the Lord, who were scattered upon all the face of the earth; and they were armed with righteousness and with the power of God in great glory. And it came to pass that I beheld that the wrath of God was poured out upon that great and abominable church, insomuch that there were wars and rumors of wars among all the nations and kindreds of the earth. And as there began to be wars and rumors of wars among all the nations which belonged to the mother of abominations, the angel spake unto me, saying: Behold, the wrath of God is upon the mother of harlots; and behold, thou seest all these things— And when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth, whose founder is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence, in preparing the way for the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel." (1 Nephi 14:12-17) Which side will you be on?